Quebec Order of Nurses reconsiders doing away with licensing exam for nurse practitioners

The Quebec Order of Nurses says it is developing a new form of testing for nurse practitioners after receiving a lot of criticism from partners over its decision to abolish the licensing exam.

A new form of testing is in the works after pushback on plan to abolish exam

The licensing exam is for nurse practitioners who just completed their schooling and clinical work. (Canadian Press)

The Quebec Order of Nurses (OIIQ) says it is developing a new form of testing for nurse practitioners after receiving criticism over its decision to abolish the licensing exam. 

In December, the order informed members that it had asked for an amendment which would allow nurse practitioners to receive their certification upon graduation without taking a licensing exam.

The licensing exam is for nurse practitioners who have just completed their schooling and clinical work.

In an email sent to members last week and confirmed by the OIIQ, the order says its board of directors will make a decision about the testing at the end of April.

"In recent weeks, partners involved in this process, including [specialized nurse practitioners], have expressed concerns about the abolition of specialty exams," the email notes.

"We listened to them. This has prompted us to revisit our approach."

May exams delayed

For those nurse practitioners who graduated in December, it means their May licensing exams have been delayed.

The OIIQ says the new form of testing will likely be reviewed this fall, which means graduates will likely not receive their licensing before November.

The new testing will not focus on the nurses' practical knowledge.

"[The testing] will not assess the knowledge of the specialized nurse practitioner, what is already done in universities, but rather the professional dimensions, in particular the ethics and the regulations, which are at the heart of the OIIQ's mission of protecting the public," states the email.

About the Author

Sarah Leavitt


Sarah Leavitt is a journalist with CBC Montreal.


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