Hi, swhitewizard !
I emigrated to Australia over thirty years ago, and it's certainly a
great place to live. Certainly the higher the qualification you hold,
the more chance of your being selected for the Skilled Migration
programme, and Australia is in need of skilled, committed nurses.
The downside is that many nurses here are giving up the profession
because they do not feel their pay and conditions are adequate, so
it's certainly not a job to consider unless you really, really want to
be a nurse.
If you are under thirty, had you considered coming here on a working
holiday visa first? That would give you a good look at the country and
its opportunities before you made up your mind? I've put contact
details for this below.
About becoming an auxiliary nurse, or health care assistant:
T. Williams, HCA Development Faciliator, UCLH Trust, writes 2/21/02
on Nurserve.co.uk's Message Board -
"Most General Hospitals will provide training for new Health Care
Assistants. After a period of time usually you will be offered the
chance to complete NVQ Level 3, this will give you the chance to enter
nurse training. Some Trusts like ours at University College Hospitals
in London start new HCA's on competency training then their NVQ.
Some Trusts can sponser Health Care Assistants to complete their
training. This means they get an income whilst training which is
better than the bursary.
It is best to apply direct to the Human Resource Department of your
local hospital, just ask for vacancies , an application form plus
organise a tour of the hospital / department. "
The Addenbrooke's NHS Trust site has more about National Vocational
Qualifications and a good outline of what the job of nursing assistant
involves. There contact is Personnel Department, Box 184,
Addenbrooke's NHS Trust, Hills Road, Cambridge CB2 2QQ; Tel
(08001700): 01223 217 038; 24-hour answerphone: 01223 217 515 and
their site was updated 7/11/2000
"All nursing assistants are required to undertake health care
assistant training within 1218 months of employment. This is a
National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) Level II in Care, which will
give you the skills, knowledge and understanding you will need to
carry out your roles and responsibilities in your clinical area with
The Thames Area Assessment Centre defines the requirements for each
NVQ course at:
The levels which would apply to you are:
Competence which involves the application of knowledge and skills in a
significant range of varied work activities, performed in a variety of
contexts. Some of the activities are complex or non-routine, and there
is some individual responsibility and autonomy. Collaboration with
others, perhaps through membership of a work group or team, may often
be a requirement.
Competence which involves the application of knowledge and skills in a
broad range of varied work activities performed in a variety of
contexts, most of which are complex and non-routine. There is
considerable responsibility and autonomy, and control or guidance of
others is often required."
These courses can be done part time, while working, and you should
probably allow a year for each one, unless you want to study very hard
The course to qualify as an RN after that is the equivalent of a
degree course and is usually a three year course.
UK office of the Australian Department of Immigration and
Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA) has comprehensive
information on the site of the Australia High Commission, UK:
Its stated aim is:
" to provide UK citizens with comprehensive information about the
types of visas available and how to apply. "
DIMIA's UK office is located at the following address:
Australian High Commission
London WC2B 4LA
"information about visa requirements for Australia;
information about Australian citizenship requirements;
processing of applications for all classes of visas (except for
General Skilled Migration applications); and
processing of some citizenship applications. "
The working holiday visa is called "WORKING HOLIDAY MAKER VISA
and the High Commission site tells us that:
"The WHM visa provides opportunities for resourceful, self reliant and
adaptable young people to holiday in Australia and to supplement their
funds through incidental employment."
To be eligible for the grant of a WHM visa you must be between 18 and
30 years of age at time of application; and be a citizen of a country
with whom Australia has mutual working holiday arrangements. This
includes the UK. You must have no dependent children, meet health and
character requirements, and you are only granted this kind of visa
once. It's a good way to have some fun and gain some experience at the
General Skilled Migrant visa are more complicated, as there are three
categories; (from the Australian High Commission Website):
First category is:
For those who do not have a family sponsor, who choose not to be
sponsored by family, or who have been nominated by a State or
You must be highly skilled and have the education, skills and
employability that will contribute to the Australian economy.
You must satisfy the basic requirements for age, English language,
qualifications, nominated occupation and recent work experience.
You must pass the points test, unless have been nominated by a State
or Territory Government, in which case you must meet the pool mark for
the points test."
This basically means you need to have applied for a job in Australia
and been accepted so that your prospective employer sponsors you. Jobs
are advertised in papers such as "The Australian", "The Melbourne Age"
and "The Sydney Morning Herald" or online at:
The second category is
For those wanting to be involved in the skill matching process (and
who are seeking to be nominated by a State or Territory Government or
If you are a Skilled-Independent applicant who satisfies the basic
requirements, your details will be placed on the Skill Matching
Database unless you indicate otherwise. The Database is sent regularly
to certain Regional Certifying Bodies and State and Territory
Governments who may then nominate applicants to fill vacancies that
cannot be filled through the local labour market.
If you DO NOT meet the pass mark and are interested in Skill Matching
you can apply under the Skill Matching category, which is NOT points
tested, has a lesser work experience requirement and for which you do
not pay the full application fee when you apply. "
This means they try and match you to a job, you do not need such high
skills and you doin't have to pay the full application fee up front.
You mightn't have much choice about where you would work at first,
The third category is:
"Family Sponsored" for which you must have a relative who is already
living in Austraslia. For some remote regional areas the rest of the
test is less stringent than for the main cities.
The Immigration Department at:
has visa application forms etc to download.
Advice for a fee is also available from a migration agent. It is
storngly recommended that you only use a registered agent, and a list
can be obtained from:
The Migration Agents' Registration Authority
PO Box Q1551
QVB NSW 1230
Please remember that all these rules may have changed by the time you
have your nursing qualifications - our whole immigration policy is
under review currently, and different political parties have different
I'd strongly suggest you look at the working holiday idea, if you can
afford the fares !
The best of luck with your plans to become a nurse, and I hope you do
come to Australia - it's a great place to live !
Search terms used: