Statement from BCCPA on new supports for Internationally Educated Nurses

Burnaby, BC (April 19, 2022) — News from the Ministry of Health announcing important changes that will help internationally educated nurses (IENs) to become eligible for work in B.C.’s healthcare system is extremely positive, says BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA). At a news conference on Tuesday, Minister of Health Adrian Dix and Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors and Long-Term Care Mable Elmore announced a series of measures to expedite the process so that IENs are more easily assessed for their qualifications, and at less personal cost.

“Removing costly financial barriers and streamlining the assessment process for IENs has been a key goal of BCCPA’s advocacy in recent years,” says BCCPA CEO Terry Lake. “We thank Minister Dix and PS Elmore for taking big steps that are sure to address labour shortages provincewide and lead to better care for seniors.”

The province, in partnership with the B.C. College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM), the Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS) and Health Match BC (HMBC), are supporting IENs who want to work in B.C. by:

  • consolidating the provincially based assessment processes for IEN candidates;
  • offering approximately $9 million in bursaries to help with assessment fees, which is expected to benefit approximately 1,500 IENs in the first year; and
  • creating new nurse navigator positions to help IENs navigate the assessment and licensing process.

Last year, BCCPA produced an original animated video to explain the costly, complicated and lengthy process that faces IENs looking to work in Canada. It was part of a series of advocacy measures taken by the Association to raise awareness and drive systemic changes, that included a Care to Chat dialogue on streamlining immigration pathways.

To view the video “Fixing Canada’s complicated pathway for IENs” click here:


“B.C. is trying to deal with a difficult a health human resources crisis that can be solved in part by hiring qualified IENs,” says Lake. “We laud this new initiative by the Ministry of Health, the B.C. College of Nurses and Midwives, NCAS and HealthMatch BC.”

For more on BCCPA’s HHR advocacy, visit



Mike Klassen
VP Public Affairs
604-736-4233, ext 231

About BC Care Providers Association & EngAge BC

Established in 1977, BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) is the leading voice for B.C.’s continuing care sector. Our growing membership base includes over 425 long-term care, assisted living, and commercial members from across British Columbia. Through its operating arm EngAge BC the organization represents independent living and home health service providers.

Video: Fixing Canada’s broken IEN pathways system

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