Immigration Stream to Help Recruit Doctors

Nova Scotia has created a new immigration stream to help attract more international doctors and specialists to the province.

The stream has been approved by the federal government as part of the Nova Scotia Provincial Nominee Program. Nova Scotia is only the second province to offer a dedicated immigration stream for doctors – and it already has its first recruit.

Dr. Jamie Tribo, who currently lives in Virginia, was the first doctor to be processed through the new stream which opened earlier this month. Dr. Tribo plans to practice family medicine in Cape Breton, beginning this spring.

“We are looking forward to our move to Nova Scotia,” said Dr. Tribo. “Obtaining a medical license in another country means clearing a lot of hurdles and paperwork before even beginning on immigration requirements. This new immigration program has made the process much simpler and shorter for us, and our recruiter has been a big help along the way.”

The new stream makes the immigration process easier and faster for internationally trained primary care doctors and specialists who have approved job offers from the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) or the IWK Health Centre by reducing the amount of paperwork. The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia, the NSHA and the IWK already assess education, language ability, certification and credential recognition as part of their hiring process. The new stream will rely on those assessments, eliminating duplication.

“Immigration is one tool we can use to recruit more skilled workers to our province, including doctors,” said Lena Metlege Diab, Minister of Immigration. “We created this new stream to make it easier and quicker for doctors to move here. This is one example of how the Office of Immigration is taking an innovative approach and partnering with NSHA and the IWK to attract more professionals to Nova Scotia.”

The new stream is part of a broader national and international recruitment strategy.

“Physician recruitment is a priority for NSHA. We are operating in a competitive environment across Canada and internationally. This stream provides our province a much-needed advantage,” said Dr. Lynne Harrigan, NSHA vice-president, medicine and integrated health. “I’m encouraged by the amount of support we have from government, physicians, communities and staff to support our continued focus on improving access to primary care.

The Nova Scotia Office of Immigration (NSOI) and the NSHA will continue to work together to recruit doctors in the United Kingdom and Ireland in 2018. NSOI will meet with doctors in London in March, and will return in April in partnership with NSHA to attend a recruitment mission.

For more information on the Physician Stream, visit .