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International Nurses

Working as a nurse in Australia – a guide for nurses with international qualifications

To practise as a nurse in Australia you will need to meet the registration requirements of the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. Depending on the qualification you hold, this may or may not involve the examination procedure conducted by the Australian Nursing & Midwifery Accreditation Council. You may also require a visa, which is issued by the Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs. It is likely that at the time of your application, your area of specialty or specific occupation will need to be on one of the Lists of Eligible Occupations. These lists are generally updated twice per year, and often list different roles within the nursing profession such as “Registered Nurse (Mental Health)”, “Registered Nurse (Surgical)” and “Enrolled Nurse”.

In October 2018 the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia announced that they will be moving to a new assessment model for overseas trained nurses and midwives. In 2019 the eight qualification assessment criteria will be replaced by three revised criteria. This will streamline the assessment process, with the outcomes from the assessment being unchanged.

In October 2018 the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia also announced that in the second half of 2019 there will be an outcomes based assessment for internationally qualified nurses and midwives whose relevant but not substantially equivalent qualifications. This will replace the need for bridging programs for these applicants.