Skip to the main content
This website uses cookies to give you a better online experience. By using this website or closing this message, you are agreeing to our cookie policy. More information
Alberta Supports Contact Centre

Toll Free 1-877-644-9992

Guest Account Sign In Sign Up
Updated

Community Health Nurse

Community health nurses provide nursing care. They may work in public health, home health care, or community-based health services.

  • Avg. Salary $80,129.00
  • Avg. Wage $42.88
  • Minimum Education 4 years post-secondary
  • Outlook N/A
  • Employed 41,600
  • In Demand High
Also Known As

Nurse, Public Health Nurse, Registered Nurse

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Community Health Nurses (3152.3) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Registered Nurses (D112) 
  • 2011 NOC: Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (3012) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

29%
29%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Provincially Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Interest Codes
The Community Health Nurse is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Community Health Nurses
SOCIAL

Interest in instructing to advise individuals and groups about health education and disease prevention, to teach maternal care, child care and other subjects related to individual and community welfare; and in participating in community needs assessment and program development

METHODICAL

Interest in compiling information to keep patient records and to help prepare special studies; and in managing complex home care cases

DIRECTIVE

Interest in operating medical equipment to perform disease screening and administer treatments; and in assisting persons with social, emotional and other problems to secure aid through community resources

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Mar 31, 2018

The duties of a community health nurse can vary from one job to another. They can also vary from one assignment to another in the same job. In general, community health nurses:

  • advance public health policies
  • support communities to become healthy
  • promote health (to prevent disease) and run education programs
  • help support groups develop community solutions to local health problems
  • deliver preventive health programs (such as vaccinations or screening programs)
  • consider the needs of individuals, families, groups, or communities in all stages of life
  • provide health support and counselling for people in crisis
  • help people in health-related crises access resources
  • develop and introduce programs to manage chronic diseases
  • help control outbreaks of infectious disease
  • provide care and manage resources during emergencies and disasters
  • plan, provide, evaluate, and document nursing care
  • co-ordinate patient care
  • manage, lead, and supervise nursing teams
  • advocate for clients
  • visit and care for individuals from all walks of life
  • ensure seamless care as clients move around in the health care system
  • work with others to design care plans
  • co-ordinate resources to help people stay in their own homes safely (and prevent unnecessary hospital visits)
  • provide acute, chronic, and end-of-life care to people in their own homes and supportive living settings

Community health nurses may work with a variety of people. Or they may focus on specific groups in the community. For example, they may work mostly with:

  • children (newborn, preschool, school-age, adolescent)
  • children with disabilities
  • families
  • women preparing for childbirth
  • healthy seniors
  • seniors struggling to live on their own
  • people or groups with disadvantages
  • community groups (such as schools, churches, housing, and social service agencies)
  • individuals with acute or episodic illnesses
  • people with chronic disease who need end-of-life support
Working Conditions
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Community health nurses work in many settings:

  • They work with First Nations and in schools and workplaces.
  • They work in primary care networks and family clinics.
  • Some work in remote communities.

They may be the only health care provider in that community.

Community health nurses may:

  • Counsel clients over the phone.
  • See clients in clinics and in their homes.
  • Work regular weekday hours.
  • Work some evening and weekend work.

Many home care nurses provide on-call support to clients and informal caregivers.

Community health nurses face the same workplace hazards as other nurses. They may be exposed to infectious diseases and chemicals. They may sustain back injuries and muscle strains from moving patients. They often work alone (beyond the controlled setting of a hospital).

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Community health nurses need to possess:

  • the ability to be flexible and adaptive
  • physical and emotional stamina
  • speaking, listening, and writing skills
  • the ability to think critically and solve problems
  • the ability to work well with individuals, families, and groups from diverse social and cultural backgrounds
  • the ability to motivate people
  • the ability to work both alone and as part of a team
  • the ability to react quickly to unexpected situations
  • the ability to supervise others who may or may not be adequately trained

They should enjoy:

  •  giving advice to individuals and groups
  • promoting and maintaining good health
  • taking a methodical approach to gathering information and providing treatments
  • directing others’ work
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2018

In Alberta, registered nurse (RN) status requires a bachelor’s degree in nursing. To work more closely with doctors and prescribe medicine, consider a master of science in nursing to become a nurse practitioner.


Required Education

The following schools offer programs and courses that meet this occupation’s educational requirements. Other eligible programs and courses may be available.

Grant MacEwan University

Mount Royal University

University of Calgary

University of Lethbridge


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Grande Prairie Regional College

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Nurse - Registered

Registered nurses assist individuals, families, groups and communities to achieve their optimal physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health and well being; assess, diagnose and provide treatment and interventions and make referrals; prevent or treat injury and illness; teach, counsel and advocate to enhance health and well being; co-ordinate, supervise, monitor and evaluate the provision of health services; teach nursing theory and practice; manage, administer and allocate resources related to health services; and engage in research related to health and the practice of nursing.

Legislation

Under Alberta's Health Professions Act  and Registered Nurses Profession Regulation registration with the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) is mandatory if you meet the competency requirements and provide professional services directly to the public, teach the practice of the profession to members or students of the profession, or supervise registered members who provide professional services to the public. Registered members, who are authorized by the College, provide restricted activities specified in the Regulation. Only registered members may call themselves registered nurses or nurses.

What You Need

Registration requires successful completion of: (1) an approved nursing education program or equivalent, and (2) the Canadian Registered Nurse Examination. Applicants who have been out of practice for a period of time also may have to demonstrate that they are currently competent to practice. For official, detailed information about registration requirements, visit the CARNA website or contact the CARNA.

Working in Alberta

Registered nurses who are registered by and in good standing with a regulatory organization elsewhere in Canada may be eligible for registration in Alberta if registered nurses in the two jurisdictions have similar responsibilities and competencies. For more information, see "What if I am already certified in another province or territory?" and the Alberta regulatory authority (below).

To find more information on the certification process for internationally educated registered nurses, see Registered Nurse Registration Process on the AlbertaCanada.com website.

Contact Details

College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta
11620 - 168 Street
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada  T5M 4A6
Phone number: 780-451-0043
Toll-free phone number: 1-800-252-9392
Fax number: 780-452-3276
Website: www.nurses.ab.ca

Additional  Information

Registered nurses who wish to work as community health nurses may consider a Canadian Certificate in Community Health (CCHN-C) through the Canadian Nurses Association.

CCHN-C certification indicates an advanced level of professional competence in the field of community health.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Community health nurses work for:

  • regional health authorities
  • private nursing agencies (such as the Victorian Order of Nurses) 
  • charitable organizations and churches
  • health care-related businesses

Some work in primary care settings. Others are self-employed and work on a contract basis.

Advancement may mean focusing on a certain type of health care service (such as palliative care, health education, genetic counselling, or teen sexual health). It could also mean serving a specific client population (such as seniors or school children).

Community health nurses are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 3012: Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses. In Alberta, 96% of people employed in this classification work in the Health Care and Social Assistance [pdf] industry.

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events that affect overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities that come up when people leave existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities that come up when new positions are created)
  • size of the occupation.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Earnings for community health nurses vary. They depend on the employer, location, and the nurse’s hours.  They also depend on the nurse’s qualifications and responsibilities.

Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $36.86 $38.09 $36.97 $36.86
Overall $42.59 $44.64 $42.88 $42.61
Top $48.37 $50.67 $48.76 $48.37

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Health Care & Social Assistance
ALL INDUSTRIES
Public Administration

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

43%
43%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

29%
29%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

5%
5%

Vacancy Rate

1%
Related High School Subjects
  • English Language Arts
  • Health, Recreation and Human Services
    • Community Care Services
    • Health Care Services
    • Human and Social Services
  • Mathematics
  • Science
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Health Care and Medical Sciences
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions (CFNU) website: www.nursesunions.ca

Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) website: www.cna-aiic.ca

College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) website: www.nurses.ab.ca

Community Health Nurses of Alberta (CHNAlberta) website: chnalberta.ca

United Nurses of Alberta (UNA) website: www.una.ab.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs call the Alberta Supports Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-644-9992 or 780-644-9992 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Supports Centre near you.

Updated Mar 31, 2018. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

Was this page useful?
Top