PASS – Pre-Arrival Program for Nurses

The Pre-Arrival Supports and Services (PASS) Program, funded by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, supports pre-arrival Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs) in their countries of residence who are planning immigration to Canada.  PASS offers supports and services designed to shorten the time that IENs spend from arrival in Canada to professional registration and employment.

The nursing registration process in Canada can be extremely difficult for IENs to navigate.  To help them achieve their goals of registration and meaningful employment in Canada, it is crucial to not only provide guidance and encouragement, but to make sure that they are well-informed before they arrive in Canada about the registration process, Canada’s regulatory bodies, the Canadian healthcare system, as well as the wide variety of educational and employment opportunities that are available to them.

PASS services are designed to equip IENs with the information, knowledge and support for accelerated, successful entry into the healthcare field.  Along with individualized case management, PASS delivers 100 hours of online programming, including nursing-specific communication courses, as well as live, interactive webinars on the Canadian healthcare system, nursing in Canada and employment-related topics.  One employment-related webinar focuses on leveraging transferable skills, so IENs can prepare to access alternative non-licensed health care jobs while working towards nursing licensure.

In partnership with the Canadian Nurses Association, PASS is also able to match incoming IENs with expert nurses, based on shared clinical backgrounds and the IEN’s destination in Canada.  Prior to arrival in Canada, participating IENs receive guidance from local nurses in order to increase their understanding of provincial nursing environments, while accessing networking opportunities before gaining employment in the health-care system. Forty expert nurse mentors from across Canada are currently involved in the PASS mentorship program.

All PASS programming is free of charge, but IENs must have proof of graduation from a nursing school and a letter of immigration confirmation from the Government of Canada.  For additional information and to connect with PASS staff, please visit

Watch the video to learn more: