Differences between Canadian and USA nursing?

  1. 3 Considering working in both the USA *and* Canada.

    Plenty of threads out there about the requirements for licensing etc in each place. But how about the differences and similarities in scope of practice? I read on one of the licensure threads that Canadian nurses have a broader scope of practice, and a greater focus on preventative care.

    Really? Well, ya got me wildly curious.....how? What can Canadian nurses do that US ones can't and vice versa? Who spends more time on paperwork? What are the headaches of pt. advocacy/HR and which ones are different depending on side of the border????

    Looking for a few donations

    Thank you!:heartbeat
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  3. Visit  Cinquefoil profile page

    About Cinquefoil, BSN, RN

    Cinquefoil has '2' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Med Surg, Home Health'. 37 Years Old; Joined Oct '08; Posts: 199; Likes: 219.

    81 Comments so far...

  4. Visit  Silverdragon102 profile page
    1
    But doesn't roles within the US vary from state to state for nurses?

    At the end of the day they are 2 different countries who work totally different as healthcare is provided differently.
    lindarn likes this.
  5. Visit  itsmejuli profile page
    3
    I'm about to find out the difference, I just moved from Florida to Calgary, Alberta.
    loriangel14, lindarn, and LPNweezy like this.
  6. Visit  Pepper The Cat profile page
    3
    I think American nurses spend a lot more time on paperwork. Don't you guys have to charge your pts for everything you use, administer, etc?

    I also think Canadian nurses spend more time at the bedside. Most hospitals I've seen practise total pt care where the RPN or RN provides all the care - bed baths, toiletting, etc.
    Fiona59, Cinquefoil, and lindarn like this.
  7. Visit  elkpark profile page
    3
    Quote from Silverdragon102
    But doesn't roles within the US vary from state to state for nurses?
    It's true that each state regulates nursing separately/independently within its own borders, and has its own Nurse Practice Act, but, realistically, the scope of practice for generalist, "regular" RNs is pretty similar and the differences are hardly worth worrying about across the US. Everyone in the country pretty much agrees about what one can and can't do with an RN license. AFAIK, there are a few states where the scope of practice for LPNs is significantly broader than in most states, and it's in the realm of advanced practice nursing (NPs, CNMs, CNSs, and CRNAs) that you see the most variation among states.
    Altra, p_hawk, and lindarn like this.
  8. Visit  nurse2033 profile page
    0
    Depends on where in the US and where in Canada.
  9. Visit  Cinquefoil profile page
    0
    OK, granted, it depends where you are.

    I guess what I'm looking for are specific stories and examples from specific locations. Anyone?
  10. Visit  Fiona59 profile page
    7
    First, if you want to work in Acute Care, you have to wrap your head around joining a union. Get used to paid sick leave, paid vacation, specified paid days off (ie: family emergency) and getting a job by seniority not the fact that you had a relative vouch for you.

    Second, healthcare is funded by the government, so unless you work for a private, contracting agency you will be a government employee.

    Third, patients love the internet and KNOW more than you do because they googled it. I'm serious.

    Fourth, you'll work to full scope in whatever province issues you a practice permit.

    Fifth, our doctors and residents listen to us and value our opinions (at least in my health authority). One surgeon has been overheard telling his residents on more than one occaision "the floor nurses know their stuff, at this stage in YOUR career, listen to them, they know more than you do".

    Sixth, no matter how how you work, a patient or their relative will remind you "I pay your wages" and that "you are overpaid".
    pseudomonas, xtxrn, melsch, and 4 others like this.
  11. Visit  ObtundedRN profile page
    2
    Quote from Pepper The Cat
    I think American nurses spend a lot more time on paperwork. Don't you guys have to charge your pts for everything you use, administer, etc?

    I also think Canadian nurses spend more time at the bedside. Most hospitals I've seen practise total pt care where the RPN or RN provides all the care - bed baths, toiletting, etc.
    I think this can also vary in the US. Where I work, none of my charting has to do with billing. The patient is billed a flat rate per day for the room that covers all general supplies. Pharmacy has a seperate charge that I don't have to deal with.

    And for the total patient care, I work in critical care, so we all do total patient care. It is harder work at times, but I prefer it this way.
    Otessa and Cinquefoil like this.
  12. Visit  joanna73 profile page
    4
    One of the things Fiona mentioned pertains to the unions. Fortunately, Canadian nurses are paid reasonably well, in comparison to many of the US States. I have noticed some ridiculously low wages for some US nurses. Also, shifts are not arbitrarily cancelled. We may be required to float, though.
    qt_rn, Cinquefoil, loriangel14, and 1 other like this.
  13. Visit  dishes profile page
    1
    cinquefoil
    The difference between Canadian and USA nursing has more to do with competencies than with scope of practice. Competencies are the physical and intellectual knowledge that are required for entry level practice. The Canadian nursing exam tests knowledge of competencies, the US exam does not. The Canadian exam tests knowledge of community health nursing theory, the US exam does not. For more information on the differences between US and Canadian licensure and community health nursing competencies see http://www.registered-nurse-canada.com/nclex.html
    and http://www.registered-nurse-canada.c...h_nursing.html

    dishes
    Last edit by dishes on Mar 20, '11
    Cinquefoil likes this.
  14. Visit  LaughingRN profile page
    1
    I'm a dual citizen nurse

    I think one of the biggest differences off the top of my head is that you HAVE to have your BSN in Canada in order to write the CRNE (Canadian licensing exam)

    Minimum requirements to practice nursing is that magical 4 year degree.
    Unless you were grandfathered in years ago, but I think they have tremendous pressure to upgrade.

    oh, and as someone also mentioned, In my experience (which is brief in Canada) you, the RN, typically does total care...all the bed baths, vitals, meds, ect. This is my experience from 2 provinces
    Cinquefoil likes this.
  15. Visit  Cinquefoil profile page
    0
    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! VERY useful!

    Quote from dishes
    cinquefoil
    The difference between Canadian and USA nursing has more to do with competencies than with scope of practice. Competencies are the physical and intellectual knowledge that are required for entry level practice. The Canadian nursing exam tests knowledge of competencies, the US exam does not. The Canadian exam tests knowledge of community health nursing theory, the US exam does not. For more information on the differences between US and Canadian licensure and community health nursing competencies see http://www.registered-nurse-canada.com/nclex.html
    and http://www.registered-nurse-canada.c...h_nursing.html

    dishes


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