Fact sheet: Supervised practice for internationally qualified midwives

Information about the assessment model for the qualifications of internationally qualified nurses and midwives is published on the NMBA website.

This is important information for internationally qualified midwives.

Qualification experience requirements

Midwives in Australia are required to complete specific minimum supervised professional experience requirements as part of their program of study. Internationally qualified midwives who hold a qualification that is assessed as meeting all the qualification criteria other than criterion 5, the professional experience requirements, may be registered by the NMBA with a condition requiring a period of supervised practice1.

1Prior to June 2018, Midwives who had not completed continuity of care experiences were registered with a notation that stated that they were not educationally prepared for midwifery continuity of care experiences. The NMBA has now determined that this notation is no longer required.

Supervised practice 


When the NMBA imposes conditions requiring supervised practice on your registration, it means that you must work under the supervision of a midwife, as approved by the NMBA. Requirements are tailored to the purpose of supervision.

Where you do not meet all requirements for general registration, supervised practice is to help assure the NMBA of your competence. Women and their infants have a right to expect safe, competent and contemporary midwifery care at all times. Correct supervision reassures the NMBA and the community that a midwife’s practice is safe and does not place the public at risk and confirms the internationally qualified midwife’s suitability for registration in Australia.

Yes, you are responsible for making sure that your employer meets the NMBA’s requirements for supervised practice.

The conditions will require that you demonstrate competence to practice as a midwife against the NMBA Midwife standards for practice (2018). These are the standards that provide the minimum expected standard of practice for a midwife and they inform the education standards for midwives in Australia. Midwife standards for practice are available under Professional standards on the NMBA website.

Other requirements of the conditions will be:

  • To work only in a health service that is approved by the NMBA for the purpose of midwifery supervised practice. You will not be able to work in private practice or work through an agency.

The Director of Midwifery Services (or equivalent) at the health service approved for your midwifery practice will be required to provide the NMBA with a letter at the end of the supervision period confirming that you have been assessed as meeting the NMBA Midwife Standards for practice.

Your registration will include the schedule of supervised practice conditions for midwives.

Current conditions on your registration will be visible on the national register.

No, there is no required start date for employment with supervised practice. However, you will need to make sure you can meet the recency of practice and continuing professional development registration standards when you renew your registration. Registration expires on 31 May of every year.

Based on the specific circumstances of your application, the NMBA will determine the duration of the supervised practice you are required to complete.

If you are required to complete 3 months full-time equivalent supervised practice, you must work 450 hours (3 X 150 hours per month).
‘Full-time equivalent’ represents average hours over a specified period which is equal to that of a full-time employee or student. Full-time equivalent hours are defined as 37.5 hours per week or 150 hours per month.

If you are working full-time, you must undertake supervised practice for the number of months specified in your conditions, with a maximum of 150 hours worked per month.

If you are working part-time, you must undertake supervised practice for as long as it takes you to complete the required number of hours.

You are responsible for paying any costs associated with meeting any NMBA-approved conditions on your registration.

You will be able to undertake supervised practice in a health service approved by the NMBA but not engage with an employment agency for the purpose of midwifery supervised practice. The NMBA does not allow private practice and practice outside these parameters.

Page reviewed 23/10/2018