Statistics Canada: Profile of immigrants in nursing and health care support occupations

Another useful StatsCan study that provides a more detailed analysis of what we know from media articles and personal experiences in healthcare, along with the over-qualification in many cases due to regulatory and other barriers:

“This study uses data from the Census of Population and the Longitudinal Immigration Database to paint a picture of immigrants in nursing and health care support occupations. It also examines the representation of immigrants in nursing and health care support occupations by intended occupation upon admission to Canada and by admission category. Lastly, it examines the professional integration of immigrants who completed their nursing education both in and outside Canada.

·       Immigrants who arrived in Canada as adults (aged 18 or older) are overrepresented in nursing and health care support occupations. In 2015/2016, they made up 22% of the workforce in these occupations, compared with 16% of the total employed population.

·       This overrepresentation of adult immigrants was particularly high for those working in nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates occupations (30%).

·       Overall, 5% of employed adult immigrants in 2015/2016 worked in nursing or health care support occupations, compared with 3% of other employed individuals. However, this proportion varied by place of birth. The percentage of adult immigrants in nursing or health care support occupations was particularly high among immigrants born in the Caribbean and Bermuda (13%), Western Africa (12%), Central Africa (12%), Eastern Africa (8%), and Southeast Asia (10%).

·       Among immigrants from Southeast Asia, immigrants from the Philippines stood out with a high proportion (13%) and a large number (44,380) of people employed in nursing or health care support occupations. In 2016, they accounted for nearly one-third (30%) of adult immigrants in these occupations.

·       Despite being overrepresented in these occupations, few principal applicants admitted under the economic immigration categories who were working as licensed practical nurses (2%) or nurse aides, orderlies or patient service associates (11%) had considered working in these occupations at the time they were admitted to Canada.

·       More than 4 in 10 (44%) adult immigrants in nursing and health care support occupations had completed their highest level of postsecondary education in Canada. However, this proportion varied by place of birth. For example, a large proportion of immigrants from the Caribbean and Bermuda (75%) and sub-Saharan Africa (60%) completed their highest level of education in Canada, while a minority of immigrants born in the Philippines (25%) and Southern Asia (32%) had done so.

·       Adult immigrants who graduated outside Canada had significantly higher rates of overqualification than adult immigrants who graduated in Canada. For example, immigrants who completed a bachelor’s degree or higher in a professional nursing program outside Canada were almost four times more likely to be overqualified (58%) than those who completed the same level of education in Canada (15%).”

Read or download the full report: https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/75-006-x/2021001/article/00004-eng.htm

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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