Public health nursing BC


Hi, I was wondering how hard it actually is to get into the public health nurse jobs in Bc? How much experience etc does it take, does it help to precept their? I hear it is hard but then i see very young public health nurses in my local office. Any help would be great :)


72 Posts

I was going to write a similar post tonight! Anyone have any useful info? Thanks!


36 Posts

I would think it would help to precept there, a lot of nurses that I know got their first job via their preceptorship or ESN.


72 Posts

That would probably help for students, good point. Unfortunately I'm already out of school and working, so that option's not available anymore. I was trying to find out if there's courses I could take, for example, but I'm having trouble finding anything like that.


72 Posts

Thank you! I'll look in to that. :)


40 Posts

I work in public health right now. The basic criteria for hiring is preceptorship in public health, or experience in maternity or peds...they won't (and I mean absolutely will not) hire from med/surg. So that would be your first start! But job wise, it's really bad right now. There are LOTS of cut backs in public health right now, both in programming and in nursing jobs. We've had 5 positions cut at my office this year, and i know more are to come in the next year or two. It's not a good time in health care right now. So my advice would be to find work elsewhere...


72 Posts

Hi jasn, thank you for your response! Are you in BC? If so, can you tell me (very roughly) what area of the province you are in? I am so sorry to hear it is bad job wise right now, that is really unfortunate and so stressful for you. Public health is so important, one reason why I am attracted to the field. It makes no sense to cut a part of the budget that helps prevent problems, like public health. Down the road it leads to more people getting sick and requiring very expensive acute care. I think people who plan these things can be shortsighted sometimes. Anyway, back to getting in to public health. Since I am no longer a student and can't do a preceptorship, I will consider getting some maternity experience. Actually I have started moving in that direction anyway. I loved maternity in school and would like to work there whether or not it lead, potentially, to a public health job. Peds, I admire peds nurses endlessly, but I don't think I could do that job. Thank you again for your post!


8,343 Posts

Has 18 years experience.

Most people have very little contact with public health nurses where I live.

My children are no longer school aged, public health nurses do the school vaccination and hand washing classes.

The well baby clinics and follow up visit serve a very specialized population for a set period.

Flu clinics are run for roughly six weeks.

Routine vaccinations aren't a top priority for most people and can be obtained at the GPs office.

I sound heartless but the public health unit nurses just don't have a lot of contact or relevance to the average citizen.

It would be different if they were involved with restaurant and shop hygiene but that area belongs to Public Health Inspectors.


72 Posts

I still think it's foolish to cut money in the healthcare system from preventative services, as it leads to further costs down the line if more people get sick and are admitted to acute care hospitals.