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WES Advisor Blog

Trusted Advice for Academic and Professional Success

Starting a Health Care Career in Canada

Thursday | April 27, 2023 | by Aliyyah Nazeem

A healthcare worker wearing a mask speaks with a patient.

The World Health Organization estimates that by 2030 there will be a shortage of 10 million health care workers worldwide. In Canada, the number of health care workers has already declined due to burnout and retirement. In 2022, Statistics Canada noted that there were nearly 140,000 job vacancies in the sector.  Whether you already live in the country or would like to immigrate, starting a health care career in Canada could be a promising professional pathway. 

A variety of opportunities in health care 

There are a wide range of health care roles in Canada, from nurses and doctors to personal support workers. With vacancies across the country there are many opportunities available, whether you want to live in a big city or a small town.  

To learn what health care jobs are available, begin by searching reputable job search sites like Indeed, Monster, or LinkedIn. Another resource is hospital websites. Check under the careers section to see what positions are available and the skills and education required for those roles.  

Health care is a lucrative sector to explore as there are many opportunities to grow within the field. From working directly with patients to administrative support roles, the health care sector offers something for nearly everyone.  

Researching health care programs in Canada 

If you are committed to starting a health care career in Canada, be sure to research programs you are interested in. For individuals who are new to the field, Canadian institutions offer a variety of opportunities, including bridging programs like Internationally Trained Health Professionals at Toronto Metropolitan University or Fundamentals of Health Care at the Michener Institute of Education.   

Bridging programs can help to fill any gaps in your skills or knowledge to help you start a new career or find a related role. These programs are typically short programs that target regulated and non-regulated high-skilled occupations.  

While completing your research, it is important to attend information sessions or open houses on campus to learn more directly from faculty and alumni.  

Admissions requirements may differ between programs, so it is essential that you understand what each program’s requirements are and how you can meet them. Take careful note of what will be required of you if you decide to apply to a specific program. This will help you to stay organized and prepared for the application process, especially if you decide to apply to more than one institution.  

What you need to obtain health care training 

Part of your research should include exploring financial assistance options for prospective students. Financial aid eligibility differs based on your visa status (permanent resident compared with study permit status), so it is important to understand what your visa status will allow.  

You may be able to secure private loans or scholarships to help pay for your health care education and training. It is also worth noting that the Canadian government offers financial aid programs that are available to international students. Such programs include the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program and Government of Canada International Scholarships. 

A key to helping the admissions office understand your academic credentials is to complete a credential evaluation. An evaluation report will help admissions officers understand the Canadian equivalency of your international education.  

We recommend beginning the credential evaluation process as early as possible—even while you are conducting research and deciding which programs to apply to. That way, you will be prepared to include your credential evaluation in your application materials.  

Final thoughts on starting a health care career in Canada 

The health care sector is very rewarding, and there are many opportunities available across Canada. Ensuring that you are aware of the programs, financial assistance, and opportunities available will help you to succeed in the sector.  

WES is ready to help you take the next step. Start your credential evaluation today! 

Related reading 

From Mali to NYC: How Fatoumata Continued Her Health Care Career
Get Started with Your WES Credential Evaluation 

Aliyyah Nazeem is Business Development Manager at World Education Services.