Nursing in Alberta - page 3

by UK_RN_AJ 4,627 Views | 36 Comments

Hi all I am a UK Staff nurse currently working within an emergency department in the UK with a view to move to Canada within the next year or so, I have sent all my applications away and am currently waiting to see if I need... Read More


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    I am nursesmarty and yes a citizen of the US, born and raised. Attended nursing school, graduated and currently working as an RN... I visited Canada over the summer and truly loved it! With healthcare changing in the US, I thought maybe Canada would be a nice change and a great way to learn a different healthcare system. However, with many hoops to jump and lack of jobs maybe I should rethink my plan. After all how can one get a job offer when you haven't even taken the CRNE?
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    Your best bet is to contact the College of Nurses first. You will need to be eligible for and sit the CRNE, and pass before you will be granted a license. After that, employers may be interested, but not before. The same applies to Canadians. We need to pass the NCLEX first.
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    Thank you all for your input and those of you taking the nclex I wish you the best of luck... If I can help in anyway please contact me! We all know how those nursing exams are a killer! Thanks again and I will definitely take your advice!
    joanna73 likes this.
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    I really depends on the hospital you are working at. I work presently in the emerg in Ontario, and although I can't talk for nurses in Alberta, we are basically trained to do pretty much everything. Okay, a bit of correction in my statement, everything that falls within the scope of practice of a nurse. You will at least at my hospital, have a chance to learn such skills as well if you are a novice for example. I practised my first IV insertion when I got hired, and to be honest, really developed and honed all of my practical nursing skills here. Its true too, when people tell you that the nursing market is slow and difficult across Canada. That said, I see tons of new nurses get hired, but usually in a part time or casual role.
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    Right. When I was a new grad, casual would not have helped much in paying any of my bills, or honing my nursing skills. I wanted to work full time, so I gladly left ON, as did many others I went to school with. Whatever works for your situation. ON was and still is one of the worst Provinces for nursing employment. AB fairs a little better, but the job market in the cities is still not what it was say 6 years ago.
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    Just to add to what others have said about the job market. I'm currently finishing nursing school in Calgary and my classmates have found it much easier to get job offers in Saskatchewan and Manitoba than in Alberta, but only in rural areas. It seems like all Canadian cities are over saturated with nurses. Right now Alberta Health Services has a Transitional Graduate Nurse hiring program for new grads (which is competitive and not the 100% hiring they put out a press release about). They say the reason they created this program is to keep local grads in Alberta because of expected retirements (otherwise most new grads who didn't get lucky with a final practicum place would in fact have a lot of trouble finding a job). The other reason is that they want more nurses to work full time in order to reduce overtime and benefit costs. Most of the nurses on the units where I work would prefer to work part time and pick up extra shifts as needed because the full-time shifts/schedules are so brutal.

    Where the nursing jobs are: small towns in the prairie provinces. And when you look at the glowing career website of Alberta Health Services, take it all with a big grain of salt. But you guys know that already.
    joanna73 likes this.
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    The new grad hiring initiatives are propaganda. Some will be hired, many will not. Same deal when I graduated in 2010 from ON. They lied. You will have more options for work after you have 2 years of full time experience. As a new grad, take whatever you can find and make the most of it. New grads everywhere have been in the same boat since 2008.
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    joanna73 speaks the truth, sigh. Good advice.

    The profs at my faculty of nursing totally believe the hiring initiative propaganda. One would think that they would have a clue about the realities of working as a nurse or getting a job as a nurse but they don't seem to.
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    Most AHS RNs want part time because of the overtime clause. Work on your slash days for double time, be unavailable on straightvtime days. .5ftes can make nearly full time wages by working a total of seven days. They don't want to work full time.
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    Quote from knina
    joanna73 speaks the truth, sigh. Good advice.

    The profs at my faculty of nursing totally believe the hiring initiative propaganda. One would think that they would have a clue about the realities of working as a nurse or getting a job as a nurse but they don't seem to.
    I graduated a long time ago and even then the faculty at my nursing school had no clue what the realities were. They'd take us onto the wards for clinical ostensibly believing that the nurses buddied with us had 4 patients each... when it was more like 7 or 8. Then they'd feign shock to learn that one nurse might have 3 students to supervise.

    Quote from Fiona59
    Most AHS RNs want part time because of the overtime clause. Work on your slash days for double time, be unavailable on straightvtime days. .5ftes can make nearly full time wages by working a total of seven days. They don't want to work full time.
    This is such a generalization. While it's true there are some part-time nurses who abuse the DDO clause, the majority of them - myself included - are in part time lines because that's what works for our families and our health. Part time lines are highly sought-after by the nurses with young families who want to be home with their kids and by those whose partners work in the patch so their childcare arrangements are easier. The ones on my unit who are raking in the OT are the full-timers, some of whom make $50K a year 'extra'. As a charge nurse I'm well aware of the cancellation pecking order... casuals, then part-timers then full-timers in reverse order of when they booked themselves for the shift. We have about 120 regular staff, 60% or more of them full-time. There's a LOT of OT on my unit, most of it going to the same small cohort of full-timers who might work nine 12-hour shifts in a row. I can think of at least a dozen of our part-timers who never work on a DDO ever. In 10 years I have NEVER picked up an extra shift... straight time or OT... I work a 0.7 FTE for a reason. If LPNs had the DDO clause, how much OT would you​ work?


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