NNAS 2016-2019 Strategic Plan

Innovative Nursing Organization Poised for Growth

Toronto, ON – April 4, 2016

The National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS) is pleased to launch its 2016-19 Strategic Plan: Building a Foundation for the Future.

NNAS is a young, innovative organization that was created through an unprecedented collaboration among Canada’s nurse regulators, working together to develop a common national assessment process for internationally educated nurses (IENs) seeking registration to practise in Canada.

The 2016-19 Strategic Plan, the organization’s first, is based on information gathered from the Regulatory Bodies that are members of NNAS, as well as IEN clients, external stakeholder and partners. It builds on the accomplishments of NNAS to date and lays a solid foundation for future growth. 

Established in 2012, NNAS achieved a great deal during its start-up years. In addition to building the new organization from the ground up, NNAS partnered with countless organizations, working groups and individuals to develop, test and refine the service. This work culminated in the 2015 launch of a new, streamlined single entry process for IENs applying for licensure to practise in Canada. As a result, Canada’s nurses became the first health regulatory group in the country to create one common application process for internationally trained professionals. 

“With a mandate to protect the public, Canada’s nurse regulators had a vision of creating an assessment process for IENs that was open, fair and consistent, while ensuring the highest standards of care,” says Mary-Anne Robinson, NNAS Board Chair. “It has been extremely gratifying to see that vision become a reality.”

The 2016-19 Strategic Plan includes Board goals and key themes that will guide the organization for the next three years and articulates a series of strategic directions that will lead to further quality improvement commitments, increased engagement across the NNAS membership and the development of a stable and effective organizational infrastructure.

“The transition into full international education credential service operations, signalled the end of our pilot project phase and a move to the next level of our evolution,” says Siu Mee Cheng, NNAS Executive Director. “Our new plan will help us expand and continue to seek excellence in the services we provide to international nurses outside of Canada and Regulatory Bodies across Canada. We will continue to strive for transparency, timeliness and harmonization across jurisdictions and most importantly, we will continue to apply rigorous standards for assessing qualifications and protecting the public.”

About NNAS

The National Nursing Assessment Service was created in 2012 by 21 Canadian nursing regulatory bodies working with the provincial and federal governments, to create a harmonized process to collect the requisite documentation and to assess education credentials of internationally educated nurses in order to support Canadian nursing registration. Its membership consists of the 21 licensed practical nurse, registered nurse and registered psychiatric nurse regulatory bodies in Canada, except Quebec and the territories. NNAS is governed by a 12-member board of directors representing the three regulated nursing groups.  Start-up funding was provided by the regulatory bodies, provincial governments and the Government of Canada. For more information visit www.nnas.ca

Click here to access the 2016-19 Strategic Plan online or contact info@nnas.ca to request a hard copy. 

Media Contact
Siu Mee Cheng, MHSc., BASc., CHE
Executive Director, National Nursing Assessment Service
1-877-215-9989 ext. 4 or smcheng@nnas.ca

I would like to take this opportunity to commend the National Nursing Assessment Service for its work in supporting nurses.
— The Honourable Jane Philpott, P.C., M.P., Minister of Health, March 2016
Posted on April 4, 2016 .

Canada’s National Nursing Assessment Service applauds government’s commitment to health care in the 2016 federal budget

Toronto, ON – March 24, 2016

The National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS) congratulates Finance Minister Bill Morneau on the release of his first budget and applauds the government’s commitment to working with Canada’s provinces and territories on a new health accord.

In order to address the health care challenges identified in the budget, it will be critical to provide an adequate supply of highly competent and qualified nurses and ensure their ease of mobility across Canada. NNAS is pleased that the government has announced an increase to the number of permanent resident admissions in 2016.

“Higher admission targets for new residents and increased funding for settlement programs will enable a larger number of qualified internationally educated nurses (IENs) to become registered in Canada,” says Siu Mee Cheng, NNAS Executive Director. “The programs will provide much‐needed skills training and language courses to facilitate a successful transition into the Canadian economy and society.”

NNAS also commends Budget 2016 for including a commitment to work collaboratively with provinces and territories to provide timely, reliable and comprehensive labour market information to equip Canadians with the tools to access a broad range of employment opportunities. This information will help IENs make more informed decisions about the best opportunities to pursue and where they may find those opportunities as they begin their registration journey.

NNAS is committed to the continuous improvement and expansion of services provided to support IENs and its 21 nursing regulatory body members across Canada. It strives for transparency, timeliness and harmonization across its member jurisdictions while applying rigorous standards for assessing qualifications and protecting the public.

About NNAS

The National Nursing Assessment Service was created in 2012 by 21 Canadian nursing regulatory bodies working with the provincial and federal governments, to create a harmonized process to collect the requisite documentation and to assess education credentials of internationally educated nurses in order to support Canadian nursing registration. Its membership consists of the 21 licensed practical nurse, registered nurse and registered psychiatric nurse regulatory bodies in Canada, except Quebec and the territories. NNAS is governed by a 12‐member board of directors representing the three regulated nursing groups. Start‐up funding was provided by the regulatory bodies, provincial governments and the Government of Canada. For more information visit www.nnas.ca

Media Contact

Siu Mee Cheng, MHSc., BASc., CHE
Executive Director, National Nursing Assessment Service
1‐877‐215‐9989 ext. 4 or smcheng@nnas.ca

Posted on March 24, 2016 .

NNAS Ends Statement 2015-2016

NNAS exists so that:

Nursing Regulatory Bodies have a harmonized regulatory approach to licensure in Canada of internationally educated nurses at a cost that demonstrates wise stewardship.

  1. Nursing Regulatory bodies have access to a shared single initial assessment for IENs that is consistent, fair, defensible, transparent, timely and affordable:
    1. There are favourable conditions for increasing standardization and consistency for remedial education.
    2. IENs have the necessary information and supports to make informed decisions on their licensure journey.
  2. Provincial Nursing Regulatory Bodies have a national platform for ongoing collaboration of common issues and interest related to harmonization:
    1. There is a repository of nursing licensure data in Canada that supports good regulatory practice and health human resource planning (decision-making, planning, policy development, etc).
Posted on February 29, 2016 .

NNAS Supports Court Ruling in Favour of APEGA

Regulator's Registration Requirements Upheld

Toronto, ON – February 23, 2016

The National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS) is pleased with the recent court decision in Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) v Mihaly, 2016 ABQB 61. The court did not find that the APEGA was in violation of the Human Rights Code for its approach to assessing education requirements of internationally educated engineers and upheld the regulator’s registration requirements.

The NNAS has followed this case with interest as the not-for-profit, pan-Canadian organization that provides education credential assessment services for its 21 Regulatory Body organizational members from across nine provincial jurisdictions. The assessment services include registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and registered psychiatric nurses.

The NNAS understands, and is experienced in dealing with the complexity associated with assessing education credentials based on evidence. It assesses international nursing education programs against Canadian standards that are evidence-based and based on the information and documentation provided by internationally educated nurses (IENs). Assessments, based on this approach, do not draw conclusions or make inferences about the quality of the IEN’s nursing program and education, but simply make a conclusion about the program’s comparability to the Canadian standards NNAS uses, based on the information provided by the IEN.

Our organization strives for transparency, timeliness and predictability across jurisdictions and most importantly, we apply rigorous standards for assessing qualifications and protecting the public.

About NNAS

The National Nursing Assessment Service was created in 2012 by Canadian nursing regulators working with the provincial and federal governments, to create a streamlined process for IENs to submit their documents for Canadian nursing registration. Its membership consists of the 21 licensed practical nurse, registered nurse and registered psychiatric nurse regulatory bodies in Canada, except Quebec and the territories. NNAS is governed by a 12-member board of directors representing the three regulated nursing groups. It was funded by the regulatory bodies and provincial governments, with subsequent and by the Government of Canada’s Foreign Credential Recognition Program. 

Posted on February 23, 2016 .

NNAS Inviting interest to volunteer at NNAS

NNAS is seeking a creative, energetic communications and public relations volunteer intern to support our communications efforts with our members, clients and stakeholders.


Volunteer Communications Intern

The National Nursing Assessment Services is an innovative pan-Canadian not-for-profit that serves to assess the credentials of internationally education nurses to support 21 nursing regulatory bodies in nine Canadian jurisdictions decisions on nursing licensure. NNAS has a number of stakeholders and clients including our 21 nursing regulatory body members, our international nursing clients from over 130 countries around the world, government and partners at the provincial and national level. We are seeking a creative, energetic communications and public relations volunteer intern to support our communications efforts with our members, clients and stakeholders.

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Developing and maintaining media contact lists
  • Monitoring and tracking our media vehicles – building our social medial following, expanding our reach nationally and internationally, tracking our social media presence
  • Performing basic website page updates and revisions (loading pages, and new content, etc.,)
  • Assisting in a communications strategy which includes role of social media to support organizational mandate
  • Organizing clips/media coverage on related nursing and licensure issues at the provincial, national and international level
  • Liaise with other communication leads from amongst our membership to coordinate communication efforts
  • Developing and collating content and distributing monthly NNAS ebulletin
  • Perform environmental scans of our members to determine any key news events related to practice, policy or legislation which may have an impact on our operations
  • Preparing press materials including press releases and fact sheets
  • Assisting with research for presentations and events, communications materials and other related matters
  • Assisting with event coordination for in-person and on-line webinars and presentations
  • Providing some general administration support as required.
  • Attending team meetings

Basic Requirements:

  • Post-secondary education (in progress or completed) in communications and/or public relations
  • Previous PR agency experience a plus, but not required
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Passionate interest in and understanding of public relations
  • Flexibility and organizational skills required to work on a variety of projects in one day
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office
  • Experiencing in website management or revision

If you are interested in being an important a part of our team, please submit a cover letter and a resume to: ea@nnas.ca. No phone inquiries.

Posted on September 24, 2015 .