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Voices of internationally educated nurses: policy recommendations for credentialing


Mina Singh, School of Nursing, Faculty of Health, Health, Nursing & Environmental Studies Building, Office 326, York University, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3J 1P3; Tel: 416-736-2100 (ext. 66439); Fax: 416-736-5714; E-mail:


SINGH M.D. & SOCHAN A. (2010) Voices of internationally educated nurses: policy recommendations for credentialing. International Nursing Review57, 56–63

Background:  The authors advance general policy recommendations for credentialing Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs) who migrate to practice nursing in developed, high-income countries. While examples are drawn primarily from a qualitative study exploring IEN experiences in Canada, the suggestions presented have broader application to any nursing, or midwifery, internationally educated professionals wanting, or needing, to practice outside their home country of education. Examples of credential processing are drawn from Australia, the European Union, New Zealand, the UK and the USA.

Methods:  This study was guided by a biographical narrative (qualitative) research methodology. A convenience sample of 12 IENs volunteered to participate.

Results:  The IENs offered recommendations based on their personal experiences, all of which have policy implications to make transparent, standardize and harmonize the credentialing processes both prior to, and upon arrival in their destination country. Suggestions are offered to make relevant the content of IEN integration programmes.

Conclusions:  The authors also suggested that national immigration agencies and nursing regulatory bodies could better coordinate their activities when processing potential IEN migrant applications.