Undoubtedly, the most popular and in demand international nursing jobs are here in the United States. International nursing jobs in the U.S. allow registered nurses to choose from a wide array of roles in hospitals, schools, cruise ships, assisted living facilities, and care homes to name a few. In general, placement agencies offering international nursing jobs offer the following:
• Above-average and competitive compensation
• Assistance on relocation
• Visa assistance (extends to the family if applicable)
• Free or very affordable housing
• Outstanding facilities
• Health benefits
Depending on your contract, the salary package and benefits that you will be receiving will differ from state to state. In general, a sufficient health insurance policy is included in the package, but the coverage will vary. Bonuses will also differ and holidays can be around two to four weeks each year. To better understand international nursing jobs in the U.S. refer to the general requirements below.
• Qualifications for international nursing jobs
In the United States, the registered nurse or RN is in the first-level nurse category. Generally, in order to qualify as a registered nurse in the U.S., you should be a general registered nurse in your home country, with a minimum of one year experience as a postgraduate and excellent English comprehension and speaking skills. Every state has its own nursing board and each one implement its own rules and regulations for nurses trained overseas.
• Licensing requirements
For you to be eligible for international nursing jobs in the U.S., you have to earn a license from the nursing board of the state you wish to work in. This license will only be valid for that specific state. To earn a license, majority of states require you that you have CGFNS (Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools) and NCLEX-RN (National Council Licensure Examination-Registered Nurse) certificates.
Majority of states require that you hold both certificates, but requirements vary from state to state so it is imperative that you get directly in touch with the particular state. The certification program of the CGFNS is offered to first-level nurses that are licensed and educated overseas, but want to evaluate or gauge their probability of passing the NCLEX-RN, which is the licensing examination for registered nurses in the U.S.
The certification program of the CGFNS includes three major assessments that you have to pass:
1. The review of credentials – this is where your credentials, such as registration and past nursing education, will be reviewed by the CGFNS. This assessment is conducted in order to verify that you are indeed a general, first-level nurse that meets all the requirements for proper registration and licensure.
2. The qualifying examination – this examination covers a whole day and the exam will be divided into two sections with 260 questions overall. This examination is done to gauge your knowledge on the nursing practices applied in the United States. Each year, this exam is conducted four times in more than 40 countries around the globe.
3. The English language proficiency test – The TOEFL or Test of English as a Foreign Language, IELTS or International English Language Testing System, and the TOEIC or Test of English for International Communications are the examinations utilized in order to satisfy the certificate program’s proficiency requirement on the English language. Both the TOEIC and TOEFL examinations are conducted globally by the ETS or Educational Testing Service, while the IELTS is handled jointly by the IDP: IELTS Australia and the British Council.
Once you have successfully completed the above requirements of the CGFNS certificate program, you will be given a CGFNS certificate. This certificate in turn will aid you in the following ways:
o It will significantly aid applicants satisfy the requirements of the states for the RN license examination. As stated earlier, most of the states require that you have a CGFNS certification if you are a general nurse educated overseas, prior to you being eligible for the NCLEX-RN exam.
o Recent statistics show that holders of the CGFNS certification constantly have a higher success rate on passing the NCLEX-RN exam than nurses without the certificate and with nursing education outside the U.S.
o The certification will likewise aid those who want to apply for a working visa. In Section 343 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, CGFNS was indicated as a legal and qualified organization capable of conducting a screening test for healthcare providers looking to apply for a working visa in the U.S. For the educated nurses who have yet to pass the NCLEX-RN examination, taking and passing the qualifying exam of the CGFNS satisfies one of Section 343’s requisites.
• Language examination requirements
Majority of nurses who are not educated in the United States are required to pass the necessary English Language examination prior to being allowed to work in the U.S. On the other hand, those who have been educated in Canada (with the exception of Quebec), Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, the United Kingdom, or Trinidad and Tobago, and used books in English, as well as received English instruction are not required to undergo the English Language examination.
• Visa application requirements
Immigration law requires healthcare workers, with the exception of doctors, pass a screening test so they can be eligible for specific working visas. ICHP or the International Commission on Healthcare Professions, a CGFNS division, offers the VisaScreen program allowing applicants to satisfy the requirements through determining and assessing their credentials.
This is done to make certain that applicants can meet the minimum qualifying standards set forth by the government. Once issued a VisaScreen certification, you can simply present it to an attorney general or consul when applying for a working visa.
Being aware of the above requirements will help you in searching for international nursing jobs in the United States.