Advice needed about going into nursing in alberta


Is it worth it anymore? There are very many job cuts for RN's now in alberta and the government wants to replace the RN's with the LPN's... I'll be entering university next year and i was planning to get a nursing degree, but with basically no job security for RN's now I'm not too sure if i should still go into nursing. Any advice anyone?


159 Posts

Specializes in Cardiology. Has 3 years experience.

I'm currently in the nursing program at the U of C. If nursing is your passion and dream then by all means I would urge you to get your degree.

Sure things are bad right now but there's a good chance by the time I graduate next year and certainly by the time you graduate things will have improved.

Don't forget, AHS may be the largest employer of nurses in Alberta, but they're not the ONLY employer :D

Good luck!


1,700 Posts

Specializes in med/surg.

I agree with the above post, it's early days for you & when they realise (again) what idiots they've been there will be jobs again!


8,343 Posts

Has 18 years experience.

If you read what the government is saying carefully, the government is NOT replacing RNs with LPNs. They have expanded both nurses scope of practice and want the nurses to work to full scope.

It is true that there are units in active treatment that are over RN staffed. Having said that, you can give an LPN an expanded scope BUT you can't make her/him work to it. Traditionally Continuing Care has employed fewer RNs than Acute Care. The LPNs do the medications, dressing, treatments, assist with care while the RN has been the Charge and liasion with families. I've seen Continuing Care sites with 1 RN for every 3 LPNs just because of the scope differential. Four nurses are required but only one in a managerial role. LPNs are being expanded into ER and IC units. Here's the big but many LPNs don't want to go there because they don't feel it's either an area that they are comfortable in OR because even with experience the pay differential is too great.

LPNs are great bargain for the government and any employer but few of the experienced LPNs that would be effective in the more "intense" settings are willing to go over because of the wage gap for skills utilized. It's the newer grads without the experience that want these jobs because they are though to be "exciting" and for lack of a better word "glamourous".

There is work for both nurses just not in the numbers of hires that there used to be.

Anyone entering nursing because they are "guaranteed" a job is in for a disappointment. Ask any working nurse.

Pediatric Critical Care Columnist

NotReady4PrimeTime, RN

16 Articles; 7,358 Posts

Specializes in NICU, PICU, PCVICU and peds oncology. Has 25 years experience.

One further comment: A lot can change in four years. After all, we went from a desperate nursing shortage to a "nursing glut" in four MONTHS. I agree with RGN1 that once the reality of all these cuts sets in, there will be another about-face and there will be positions open again.


931 Posts

Specializes in Geriatrics, Med-Surg..

To the op: I would continue with your plans but you just may need to start somewhere else other than a hospital, or perhaps apply absolutely everywhere possible.

I agree Fiona59, I would not consider working in ER or ICU, I just don't have the desire, the background or the feeling that a very unstable patient would be best served by myself.

However on the other hand, I also don't think that the ER or ICE is the place for new grad RN's either, but certainly some new RN grads start there and do well but my feeling is that almost everyone would benefit from at least some prior acute care experience. Again, JMO.