Poilievre Wants Standardized Tests for Doctors and Nurses

OTTAWA - Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre is calling for a national standardized testing process to be created in order to speed up the licensing process for doctors and nurses who are either immigrants or were trained abroad.

Poilievre said that this will help to address the doctor shortage currently affecting our health-care system. "In Canada today, we have a doctor shortage of about 40,000," he said, speaking outside the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa. "In other words, if we had all the doctors that are here today in Canada, but trained abroad, working in our health-care system, we could reduce our doctor shortage by half."

He is suggesting a "blue seal" testing standard, which would also allow qualified health-care professionals to work in any province or territory that volunteers to be part of the program. Under his proposed program, health care professionals would be able to take a standardized test and receive an answer within 60 days, which he says would speed up the licensing process.

Currently, the process to try and get licensed to practice medicine in Canada depends on which province or territory you live in. Some provinces have introduced new methods during the pandemic to streamline the licensing of doctors trained outside of Canada, but many candidates still struggle to obtain the necessary approvals.

The "blue seal standard" is an idea taken from the regulated trades, Poilievre said, where tradespeople such as carpenters, industrial electricians, crane operators and other workers in regulated trades are able to take a single testing standard to receive the qualifications to work anywhere in Canada. "It's common sense," Poilievre said. "If you can do the job, you should get the job. If you are a doctor, you shouldn't be driving a taxi."

This is a test.

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