Beginning your career again as a doctor in a new country may seem like a long and difficult process. If you’ve ever wondered what your options are, Canada offers several programs that may make the process easier than it seems.
In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about starting a new chapter of your life in Canada. We’ll go over the different available visa programs, their eligibility requirements, and benefits.
Let’s get started!
Apply through the Federal Skilled Worker Program.
The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) is one of the most popular immigration programs for Indian doctors looking to start a career in Canada. The program fast-tracks permanent resident status, and applications can be processed in as little as six months.
The FSWP is managed by Express Entry, a paperless system designed to speed up the immigration process for highly skilled workers who want to move to Canada.
It is a points-based system that awards points for factors such as age, education, work experience, language proficiency, and more. Once points are awarded, candidates are ranked against each other.
The highest-ranking candidates are invited to apply for permanent residence.
Unlike the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) or Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs), there is no requirement to have worked in Canada before applying to the FSWP. Rather, applicants must meet a minimum points threshold to be eligible.
Once you’ve been invited to apply, you will have 60 days to submit a complete application. You and your family will receive permanent resident status if your application is approved.
Who is eligible to apply for the Federal Skilled Worker Program?
To be eligible for the FSWP, you must:
- Have at least one year of full-time or equivalent paid work experience
- Meet the minimum language requirements of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 in all 4 abilities.
- Hold a degree, diploma, certificate, or credential that is deemed equivalent to Canadian standards according to a credential assessment service.
- Score 67 points or more on the FSWP selection grid.
- Show that you have enough money to support yourself and your family once you arrive in Canada unless you have a valid job offer from a Canadian employer.
- Be admissible to Canada by having a clean criminal record and meeting other basic requirements.
Quebec does not accept applicants immigrating through the FSWP, so if you are hoping to live in that particular province, this may not be your route of entry.
Education requirements for applicants
To be eligible for the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Indian doctors must:
- Have a medical degree from a university listed in the World Directory of Medical Schools.
- Have their credentials been verified by the Medical Council of Canada (MCC)?
- Secure an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report from PhysiciansApply.ca.
- Obtain a passing score on the Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Examination (MCCQE) Part I and II to get a Licentiate of the Medical Council of Canada (LMCC).
- Pass a one-year post-graduate program from the medical regulatory authority in the province or territory where they intend to work.
- Have a minimum score of 7 on each band of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
- Get the official certification from The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada or the College of Family Physicians of Canada.
To be eligible for the Federal Skilled Worker Program, you must have at least one year of full-time paid work experience in an occupation listed under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system.
Your work experience must have been acquired within the last 10 years and must be:
- Paid work (volunteer work, unpaid internships, or co-op placements do not count).
- Full-time or equivalent (30 hours of paid work per week, or at least 15 hours per week for 24 months).
- Can use multiple occupations as experience, but must total to full-time work.
- Your experience must include completing the skills outlined by the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system.
For example, the main duties of a Family physician, General practice resident, General practitioner (GP), and Medical doctor may include:
- Examine patients and take their medical histories.
- Order and interpret laboratory tests and X-rays.
- Prescribe medications or other treatments.
- Counsel patients on diet, hygiene, and preventive healthcare.
- Inoculate patients against communicable diseases.
- Advise expectant mothers on prenatal care, childbirth, and postnatal care.
- Identify and treat common medical conditions, such as colds and flu.
- Perform minor surgery, such as removing stitches or setting fractures.
- Report communicable diseases to public health authorities.
Atlantic Immigration Pilot
Slightly more complicated than the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Atlantic Immigration Pilot is designed to help skilled workers and their families immigrate to Canada’s Atlantic Provinces – Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
If you’re a doctor or medical professional looking to move to one of these provinces, you may be eligible for the Atlantic Immigration Pilot. To qualify, you must first receive a job offer from a designated employer in participating provinces.
What are the program requirements?
To be eligible for the Atlantic Immigration Pilot, you must:
- Have a medical degree from a recognized university that can receive an Educational Credential Assessment report from the Medical Council of Canada.
- Receive a full-time job offer from a designated employer in one of the participating provinces.
- Have at least 1-year of full-time (or an equivalent amount in part-time) paid work experience in the 5 years before you apply.
- This work experience must be in the medical field or related to your job offer.
- Prove that you have enough money to support yourself and your family after you arrive in Canada.
- Take an approved language test (IELTS) and score at least CLB 5 in all 4 categories (reading, writing, listening, and speaking).
Canada needs doctors
There is a current and ongoing doctor shortage in Canada. A Collaborative Working Group on the Future of Emergency Medicine in Canada estimates that by 2025, the country will need an additional 1518 emergency physicians. The same report indicates that 40% of emergency departments are already experiencing physician shortages.
So which Provinces in Canada need doctors the most?
The province currently faces a shortage of doctors, especially in rural areas. According to Global News, 78000 people in Nova Scotia do not have a family doctor.
The province is working to attract more doctors from other parts of Canada and other countries. They offer competitive salaries, incentives such as loan forgiveness, and funding for local recruitment agencies to fulfill the current demand.
Indian doctors can take advantage of these opportunities to earn a good income (approximately $249,811/year) and help the people of Nova Scotia.
Newfoundland and Labrador
The province is home to many rural and underserved communities, which often struggle to attract and retain doctors. According to CBC, 125,000 people in Newfoundland and Labrador do not have a family doctor.
As a result, the province has sped up the accreditation process for International physicians and is offering several incentives to attract them to the province. This is a great opportunity for Indian doctors to serve in rural and underserved communities while also getting valuable Canadian experience.
The average salary for a family doctor in Newfoundland and Labrador is $180,327 per year. In addition, the province offers free medical liability insurance for all physicians.
In recent years, New Brunswick is also facing a shortage of doctors. This has led to longer patient wait times and a strain on the healthcare system. The province has a $5M budget to attract more medical students to study and work in New Brunswick.
In addition, the province is also working on a strategy to better retain its existing physicians. New Brunswick has many opportunities for Indian doctors. The province offers a variety of clinical and academic settings and a supportive environment for those new to Canada.
Prince Edward Island
In recent years, the number of doctors retiring or leaving the province has outnumbered the number of new doctors moving to Prince Edward Island.
As a result, the ratio of physicians to residents has been declining, and wait times for medical appointments have been increasing. To address this problem, the government of Prince Edward Island has also been working to attract more doctors to the province.
Indian doctors can earn approximately $400,000 annually and have excellent career growth opportunities on Prince Edward Island. In addition, the quality of life on the island is very good, with a low crime rate and beautiful scenery.
Get started on your Canadian immigration journey right now!
So if you are an Indian doctor looking to immigrate to Canada, the Federal Skilled Worker Program and Atlantic Immigration Pilot are two great options.
To learn more about how you can take advantage of these programs, visit Express Entry PR for a step-by-step guide on the application process.
We’re here to help make your move as smooth as possible!