Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
 

Meeting the registration requirements

Internationally qualified nurses and midwives who apply for registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) are assessed against the NMBA registration standards and the qualification criteria of the assessment model.

  • Registration standards define the requirements that applicants must meet to be considered fit to practise as nurses and midwives. 
  • Qualification criteria define the minimum acceptable education and training that international applicants must have undertaken. These criteria are different for registered nurses, midwives and enrolled nurses.

Applicants must meet all registration standards and qualification criteria in order to be eligible for registration without conditions or limitations.

The NMBA has approved the following registration standards for those seeking initial registration:

  • Criminal History 
  • English Language Skills 
  • Recency of Practice 
  • Professional Indemnity Insurance Arrangements

The NMBA has also developed the following supplementary documents:

More information relating to registration standards, including English language skills, CPD and recency of practice, is available in FAQ and fact sheets on the NMBA website.

Before you can be registered to practice in Australia as a registered nurse, your application will be assessed against the criteria listed below. You need to provide us with evidence that you meet each of the eight criteria. For more information about the documentation required, please see Supporting documentation for us to assess your qualification.

 

Criterion What the criterion requires
1 Your qualification makes you eligible to apply for registration to practise as a registered nurse in the country where you completed the program of study.
2 The education institution where you studied was externally accredited during the period when you undertook your studies.

That is, during the time you studied your education institution must have been:

  • subject to regular review by an external quality assurance agency and
  • registered or accredited by that agency
For more information on this criterion, please see Accreditation requirements of the qualification assessment model.
3 Your program of study was externally accredited and provided successful graduates with a qualification in nursing.

That is, during the time you undertook your program of study:

  • the program of study must have been subject to regular review within a system of external accreditation implemented by the relevant nursing and/or midwifery regulatory authority or agency and
  • the program of study must have been accredited or recognised by that authority or agency and
  • the system of external accreditation included the application of accreditation standards specific to nursing education that are comparable to the current nursing and midwifery accreditation standards and system in Australia.
For more information on this criterion, please see Accreditation requirements of the qualification assessment model.
4 Your overseas qualification is equivalent to an Australian bachelor degree (registered nurse) as a minimum.

For more information on this criterion, please see Assessing your qualifications: Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF).
5 Your program of study included a minimum of 800 hours of workplace experience* providing exposure to a variety of healthcare settings.

*Definition of workplace experience is taken from the 2012 ANMAC Registered Nurse Accreditation Standards, and used with permission:

‘a component of nursing education which allows students to use judgment when applying theoretical knowledge in an actual practice setting. Includes concept of 'clinical training' as set out under National Law.’
6 The curriculum of your program of study focused on the various aspects of nursing practice.

That is, that it:
  • has contemporary nursing practice as its main focus,
  • includes core health professional knowledge and skills and specific nursing practice knowledge and skills that:
    • are based on current and best available evidence and
    • are applied across the human lifespan and
  • includes health/nursing research, health policy and evidence based inquiry throughout the course content.
7 You successfully completed all components of the program and have graduated with a qualification.
8 The education institution that provided the program of study, and confirmed your qualification, has certified that you have successfully completed an assessment in medication management including:

  • administration of medications (including calculations),
  • pharmacokinetics (the study of the bodily absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of drugs) and
  • pharmacodynamics (the study of the biochemical and physiological effects of drugs and the mechanisms of their action in the body).
As part of the certification, the education institution must provide information that clearly shows the medication management content you completed as part of the program of study.

Before you can be registered to practise in Australia as a midwife, your application will be assessed against the criteria listed below. You need to provide us with evidence that you meet each of the eight criteria. For more information about the documentation required, please see Supporting documentation for us to assess your qualification.

 

Criterion What the criterion requires
1 Your qualification made you eligible to apply for registration to practise as a midwife in the country where you completed the program of study.
2 The education institution where you studied was externally accredited during the period when you undertook your studies.

That is, during the time you studied your education institution must have been:

  • subject to regular review by an external quality assurance agency and
  • registered or accredited by that agency.
For more information on this criterion, please see Accreditation requirements of the qualification assessment model.
3 Your program of study was externally accredited and provided successful graduates with a qualification in midwifery.

That is, during the time you undertook your program of study:

  • the program of study must have been subject to regular review within a system of external accreditation implemented by the relevant nursing and/or midwifery regulatory authority or agency and
  • the program of study must have been accredited or recognised by that authority or agency and
  • the system of external accreditation included the application of accreditation standards specific to midwifery education that are comparable to the current nursing and midwifery accreditation standards and system in Australia.
For more information on this criterion, please see Accreditation requirements of the qualification assessment model.
4 Your overseas qualification is equivalent to an Australian bachelor degree (midwife) as a minimum (or where relevant a postgraduate qualification).

For more information on this criterion, please see Assessing your qualifications: Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF).
5 Evidence of completion of specified minimum supervised professional experience requirements, regardless of the length of the program.
6 The curriculum of your program of study focused on midwifery and contemporary midwifery practice and reflects the International definition of a midwife (in accordance with the International Confederation of Midwives’ definition).

That is, that it:
  • has contemporary midwifery practice as its main focus,
  • includes core health professional knowledge and skills and specific midwifery practice knowledge and skills that:
    • are based on current and best available evidence andī€­
    • are applied across the human lifespan and
  • includes health/midwifery research, health policy and evidence based inquiry throughout the course content
7 You successfully completed all components of the program and have graduated with a qualification.
8 The education institution that provided the program of study, and confirmed your qualification, has certified that you have successfully completed an assessment in medication management including:

  • administration of medications (including calculations),
  • pharmacokinetics (the study of the bodily absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of drugs) and
  • pharmacodynamics (the study of the biochemical and physiological effects of drugs and the mechanisms of their action in the body).
As part of the certification, the education institution must provide information that clearly shows the medication management content you completed as part of the program of study.

Professional experience requirements for a midwife

The inclusion of periods of midwifery practice experience in the program, so students can complete the following minimum, supervised midwifery practice experience requirements.

Continuity of care experiences

  1. Experience in woman-centred care as part of continuity of care experiences. The student is supported to:
    1. establish, maintain and conclude a professional relationship while experiencing continuity with individual women through pregnancy, labour and birth, and the postnatal period, regardless of model of care
    2. provide midwifery care within a professional practice setting and under the supervision of a midwife—in collaborative practice arrangements supervision by other relevant registered practitioners (for example, medical officer qualified in obstetrics, child health nurse or physiotherapist) may be appropriate
    3. engage with a minimum of 10 women—engagement involves attending four antenatal visits, two postnatal visits and, for the majority of women, the labour and birth
    4. maintain a record of each engagement incorporating regular reflection and review by the education or health service provider.

Antenatal care

  1. Attendance at 100 antenatal episodes of care. This may include women the student is following as part of their continuity of care experiences.

Labour and birth care

  1. Under the supervision of a midwife, act as the primary accoucheur for 30 women who experience a spontaneous vaginal birth, which may include women the student has engaged with as part of their continuity of care experiences. This also involves:
    1. providing direct and active care in the first stage of labour, where possible
    2. managing the third stage of labour, including the student providing care as appropriate if a manual removal of the placenta is required
    3. facilitating initial mother and baby interaction, including promotion of skin-to-skincontact and breastfeeding in accordance with the mother’s wishes or situation
    4. assessment and monitoring of the mother’s and baby’s adaptation for the first hour post-birth including, where appropriate, consultation, referral and clinical handover.
  2. Provide direct and active care to an additional 10 women throughout the first stage of labour and, where possible, during birth—regardless of mode.

Complex care

  1. Experience in caring for 40 women with complex needs across pregnancy, labour, birth or the postnatal period. This may include women the student has engaged with as part of their continuity of care experiences.

Postnatal care

  1. Attendance at 100 postnatal episodes of care with women and, where possible, their babies. This may include women the student has engaged with as part of their continuity of care experiences.
  2. Experiences in supporting women to feed their babies and in promoting breastfeeding in accordance with best-practice principles advocated by the Baby Friendly Health Initiative.
  3. Experiences in women’s health and sexual health.
  4. Experiences in assessing the mother and baby at four to six weeks postpartum in the practice setting where possible; otherwise by use of simulation.

Neonatal care

  1. Experience in undertaking 20 full examinations of a newborn infant.
  2. Experiences in care of the neonate with special care needs

Please note: The qualification criteria for registration as an enrolled nurse are different to those of a registered nurse. An enrolled nurse differs from a registered nurse in the following ways:

  • levels of, and approach to, the education of enrolled nurses 
  • requirements for supervision
  • standards for practice, and 
  • scope of practice.

Your registered nurse qualification will not meet the requirements for registration as an enrolled nurse:

There are two distinct divisions of nursing registration in Australia - enrolled nurse and registered nurse, and given the distinction between these two types of nursing registration under the National Law, the NMBA must consider qualifications for each division separately. A program of study leading to registration as a registered nurse is delivered at the Bachelor level (AQF 7). A program of study leading to registration as an enrolled nurse is separate from, and not part of, the program of study leading to registration as a registered nurse and is delivered at the Diploma level (AQF 5). The breadth and depth of the education of a registered nurse and an enrolled nurse are quite different. As a result the role expectations and scope of practice of a registered nurse and an enrolled nurse are different.

Each program of study is approved against the relevant NMBA-approved accreditation standards and designed to meet the relevant NMBA standards for practice (also known as competency standards), that is the Enrolled Nurse competency standards or the Registered Nurse competency standards. This means that a person graduating from a program of study (such as a Bachelor of Nursing) leading to registration as a registered nurse is not entitled to registration as an enrolled nurse in Australia.

If an applicant from overseas was qualified to register as a nurse in the country where they completed their studies, and that country had only one level of nursing registration, their qualification is assessed against the requirements for registration in the division of registered nurse in Australia.

Before you can be registered to practise in Australia as an enrolled nurse, your application will be assessed against the criteria listed below. For us to assess your qualification, you need to provide us with evidence that you meet each of the eight criteria. For more information about the documentation required, please see Supporting documentation for us to assess your qualification.

Criterion What the criterion requires
1 Your qualification made you eligible to apply for registration to practise as an enrolled nurse in the country where you completed the program of study.
2 The education institution where you studied was externally accredited during the period when you undertook your studies.

That is, during the time you studied your education institution must have been:

  • subject to regular review by an external quality assurance agency and
  • registered or accredited by that agency.
For more information on this criterion, please see Accreditation requirements of the qualification assessment model.
3 Your program of study was externally accredited and provided successful graduates with a qualification in nursing.

That is, during the time you undertook your program of study:

• the program of study must have been subject to regular review within a system of external accreditation implemented by the relevant nursing and/or midwifery regulatory authority or agency and
• the program of study must have been accredited or recognised by that authority or agency and
• the system of external accreditation included the application of accreditation standards specific to nursing education that are comparable to the current nursing and midwifery accreditation standards and system in Australia.

For more information on this criterion, please see Accreditation requirements of the qualification assessment model.
4 Your overseas qualification is equivalent to an Australian diploma (enrolled nurse) as a minimum.

For more information on this criterion, please see Assessing your qualification: Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF).
5 Your program of study included a minimum of 400 hours of professional experience placement* providing exposure to a variety of healthcare settings.

*Definition of professional experience placement is taken from the 2009 Enrolled Nurse Accreditation Standards, and used with permission:

‘the component of nursing education that allows students to put theoretical knowledge into practice within the consumer care environment (adapted from Clare et al 2003 ‘clinical placement/practicum’). It includes, but is not limited to, the hospital setting, and may include general practice, remote and rural health clinics, and community care environments’.
6 The curriculum of your program of study focused on the various aspects of practice as an enrolled nurse.
7 You successfully completed all components of the program and have graduated with a qualification.
8 The education institution that provided the program of study, and confirmed your qualification, has certified that you have successfully completed an assessment in medication management including:

  • administration of medications (including calculations),
  • pharmacokinetics (the study of the bodily absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of drugs) and
  • pharmacodynamics (the study of the biochemical and physiological effects of drugs and the mechanisms of their action in the body).
As part of the certification, the education institution must provide information that clearly shows the medication management content you completed as part of the program of study.
 
 
 
 
Page reviewed 31/07/2015