Manitoba Government’s New Nursing Float Pool Supports Patient Care in Rural, Northern Communities

Press Release

May 9, 2023

Approximately 900 Shifts Worked in First Three Months of 2023: Gordon

Fifty-five nurses have been hired into the Manitoba government’s provincial nursing float pool since its inception late last year, bringing nurses back into the public system to work shifts in rural and northern communities, Health Minister Audrey Gordon announced today.

“Our government is healing health care by bolstering the health-care system’s workforce and improving patient care and staff well-being,” said Gordon. “The provincial nursing float pool is attracting nurses to work in rural and northern communities, improving Manitoban’s access to care, and supports for existing staff while lessening reliance on overtime and agency nursing.”

The nursing float pool provides nurses with flexibility in terms of length of assignment, choice of health region, work location and specialty area preferred. Nurses are paid for travel time within the province, mileage, per diem and accommodations if needed. Nurses earn an hourly premium when assigned provincial float pool shifts, with casual employees having the option to join pension and benefit plans, said Gordon.

The minister noted nurses hired into the float pool also benefit from having access to the same clinical and educational supports that regional nurses in the public system receive, allowing them to more easily expand their skill sets and remain up to date on best practice standards.

Of the 55 nurses hired so far to casual positions, approximately two-thirds come from an agency background and five nurses are from out of province. These nurses have worked approximately 900 shifts in the first three months of this year, the minister noted, at sites in the Northern Health Region, Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority and Prairie Mountain Health. Work to hire more nurses into the float pool and further expand the program to communities in the Southern Health-Santé Sud region are ongoing.

“The provincial nursing float pool offers a diverse range of experiences for nurses to enhance their skills and expand their scope of practice while working within our public health system,” said Monika Warren, COO of provincially co-ordinated health services and chief nursing officer, Shared Health. “These positions have proven to be popular with nurses who want more control in their schedules while supporting patient care at sites in rural communities that frequently face staffing challenges.”

Gordon noted the provincial nursing float pool is one of several initiatives implemented in recent months to address staffing challenges, support patient care and improve workplace health and well-being. Other initiatives include:

  • the Health Human Resource Action Plan, which commits to add 2,000 health-care providers, invest $200 million to retain, train and recruit health-care staff. and eliminate mandated overtime;
  • expanding access to post-secondary programs that address long-term capacity demands, which include nearly 400 additional nursing seats and 80 new physician seats; and
  • work with regulatory bodies, such as the College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba, relating to newcomer integration and recruitment initiatives for internationally educated nurses and physicians to grow the workforce.

More information on the provincial nursing float pool including how to apply, is available at

More information about the Health Human Resource Action Plan is available at

– 30 –

For more information:

  • Public information, contact Manitoba Government Inquiry: 1-866-626-4862 or 204-945-3744.
  • Media requests for general information, contact Communications and Engagement: [email protected].
  • Media requests for ministerial comment, contact Communications and Stakeholder Relations: 204-451-7109.


NationTalk Partners & Sponsors Learn More