Recognition of International Medical Credentials in Canada and the European Union
Highly skilled immigrants with professional qualifications earned outside Canada often experience barriers to entering the Canadian labour force. Although highly skilled immigrants contribute significantly to Canada´s competitiveness and economic growth, provincial governments often lack effective initiatives to recruit and integrate these immigrants into their labour markets. Such concerns have been expressed especially in relation to international medical graduates (IMGs) who, though well trained, have often faced difficulties meeting the formal entry requirements necessary for practicing their profession. This research examines both the occupational standards (skills, knowledge, and abilities required for an occupation established by provincial governments) and certification requirements (official recognition issued by a regulatory organization of a Canadian jurisdiction attesting that an individual is qualified to practice medicine in that particular jurisdiction). Depending on the outcomes of the research, suggestions will be made for both (1) establishment of a more efficient system for the recognition of medical credentials by professional regulatory organizations, and (2) engendering cooperation among provincial governments at the pan-Canadian (national) level. Since the European Union´s (EU) regulatory framework for labour mobility ensures not only harmonization of physicians´ minimum training requirements, but also the automatic recognition of their qualifications EU-wide, mobility of physicians within the EU will be examined as well. An examination of the process establishing that framework may well reveal lessons for Canada.