Canada is facing a national crisis due to a shortage of medical sonographers, creating an opportunity for qualified foreign nationals to immigrate to the country and gain permanent residency. The country’s Express Entry system, which targets specific occupations, has recently started focusing on healthcare jobs, including medical sonographer.
Earlier this year, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that the Express Entry system would prioritize 82 occupations in healthcare, technology, trades, transport, and agriculture. This change aims to make the immigration process more responsive to the labor market needs and help Canada address its severe labor shortages.
Medical sonographers, categorized under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2021 system with the code 32122, are in high demand in Canada. The absence of sufficient healthcare workers has been described as a national crisis, with not enough personnel to support the increasing number of patients entering the healthcare system.
In a joint report, Sonography Canada, the Canadian Association of Radiologists, and the Canadian Association of Medical Radiation Technologists called for more equipment and personnel to meet the healthcare challenges in Canada. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadians had to wait an average of 50 to 82 days for CT scans and up to 89 days for MRI imaging, significantly longer than the recommended wait time of 30 days.
The demand for medical sonographers has increased during the pandemic, leading to longer waitlists for imaging services. This situation has created concerning circumstances for people needing cancer screening or image-guided therapies.
The Job Bank website predicts good job prospects for medical sonographers in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, and Saskatchewan over the next three years. In early August, Indeed.ca listed 102 positions for medical sonographers across Canada.
The median hourly wage for medical sonographers in Canada is $36.71, with variations ranging from $26.44 to $53 per hour. Based on a standard 37.5-hour workweek, medical sonographers can earn up to $103,350 per year.
To be eligible for immigration to Canada as a medical sonographer, candidates need at least six months of continuous work experience in Canada or abroad within the past three years. This experience can be gained through work permits or student visas.
Canada has been issuing occupation-specific invitations for several years, and the recent changes to the Immigration, Refugee and Protection Act allow for occupation-based invitations through the Express Entry system. The immigration minister is required to consult provinces, territories, industry members, unions, employers, worker advocacy groups, settlement provider organizations, and immigration researchers and practitioners before announcing new categories.
The number of occupations facing shortages in Canada has doubled between 2019 and 2021, according to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC). Federal high-skilled admissions accounted for a significant portion of overall French-speaking admissions outside Quebec from 2018 to 2022.
If you are interested in immigrating to Canada as a medical sonographer or if you are an employer looking to hire foreign workers, various resources and services are available to assist you. Immigration.ca and its sister company skilledworker.com offer recruitment packages and expertise in foreign recruitment.
Canada is actively seeking skilled workers in various occupations, including medical sonographers. If you are qualified and meet the eligibility criteria, this could be an excellent opportunity to gain permanent residency in a country with a strong healthcare system and promising job prospects. Fill out a free evaluation form to determine your eligibility and take the first step towards living and working in Canada.