Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia - October 2022

October 2022

Contents


Message from the Chair

Welcome to our new-look newsletter.

These last couple of months we have had the privilege of once again being able to attend and engage with nurses and midwives at nursing and midwifery conferences across Australia. This included the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives’ (CATSINaM) 25th Anniversary Conference that celebrated 25 years of collective and individual activism for First Nations nurses and midwives. This three-day event focused on the launch of CATSINaM’s GENKE II report as well as celebrating a series of individual and collective acts since its inception. Read more about the event below. 

We recently released a fact sheet on the roles and scope of practice of registered nurses, enrolled nurses, nurse practitioners and midwives, as guidance for employers, private and public health services, and other practitioners. We also distributed the first Nurse practitioner news bulletin that focuses on critical regulatory information for NPs and I encourage RNs studying to be an NP, or considering this in the future, to take a look. A link to the bulletin can be found in this edition.  

Given the ongoing challenging times, both with the pandemic and broader national and global issues, the NMBA has also agreed to freeze registration fees for nurses and midwives for the second year in a row.  

We sincerely thank you for your resilience in these difficult times and your continued commitment to keeping the public safe. We encourage anyone who may be experience significant stress to reach out to Nurse & Midwife Support on 1800 667 877 for free and confidential 24/7 mental health services.

Adjunct Professor Veronica Casey

Chair, Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia

Veronica Casey   

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Call for applications

National Board appointments

Applications are now open for practitioner members from Queensland and South Australia for appointment to the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA). 

Hear from Board members discussing what is involved and what life is like as a board member. More information about the roles, eligibility requirements and the application process can be found on Ahpra's Statutory appointments page

We are committed to increasing diversity and social inclusion on National Boards and encourage applications from people with a disability, people who identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander, LGBTIQA+ people and people from culturally diverse backgrounds.

Applications close on Sunday 6 November at 11:55pm AEST.

State board applications for NSW, Qld and Tas  

Applications are sought from community members, registered nurses, registered midwives and enrolled nurses to fill vacancies on the NMBA's state and territory boards in the following jurisdictions:

  • New South Wales (NSW) – three community members and four practitioner members
  • Queensland – one community member and two practitioner members (including Chair*)
  • Tasmania  one practitioner member (including Chair)*

*Practitioner member applicants may express interest in the role of Chair; however, this is not mandatory.

The state and territory boards undertake delegated functions of the NMBA and make registration and notification (complaint) decisions about individual nurses and midwives, based on the NMBA’s standards, guidelines and policies. Our state and territory boards also work in partnership with Ahpra. Notifications are not handled by the state board in NSW. 

Apply here

Applications close (NSW & Qld): Sunday 30 October 2022, 11.55pm AEDT

Applications close (Tas): Sunday 20 November 2022, 11.55pm AEDT

OSCE examiners wanted – apply today!

We are seeking expressions of interest from nurses and midwives to be examiners in the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) for:

  • registered nurses
  • enrolled nurses, and
  • midwives

Examiners play a vital role in providing a reliable and fair assessment process. Examiners will use their professional knowledge of the nature and culture of the profession to test candidate knowledge and proficiency in an exam setting.

*Update* Applications now closed

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NMBA news

Scope of practice fact sheet for nurses and midwives published

We have developed a new fact sheet on the roles and scope of practice of registered nurses, enrolled nurses, nurse practitioners and midwives. 

The fact sheet: Scope of practice and capabilities of registered nurses, enrolled nurses, nurse practitioners and midwives uses information from the NMBA’s registration standards, standards for practice, codes and guidelines. It has been developed as guidance for employers, private and public health services, and other practitioners.

The fact sheet clarifies the educational outcomes, provides examples of core activities, and highlights the fundamental differences between each NMBA practitioner category. 

Access the new fact sheet on the NMBA website

Nurse practitioner news

The NMBA recently distributed a nurse practitioner (NP) news bulletin highlighting key regulatory issues that could affect the day-to-day practice of an NP. This issue covered the latest recommendations for NPs in the prescribing space, specifically for medicinal cannabis, cosmetic procedures and online prescribing.  Leanne Boase, President of the Australian College of Nurse Practitioners, shared her thoughts and recommendations for NPs prescribing in a virtual environment.  We also provided an update on the NMBA and the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Councils (ANMAC) joint review of the NP regulatory framework.

Access this edition of Nurse practitioner news

Updates from recent NMBA meetings

The NMBA will be releasing the Safety and quality guidelines for privately practising midwives for public consultation in the coming month. This will be the updated version following its first round of targeted consultation. This is part of our regular five-yearly review of the safety and quality guidelines for privately practising midwives to ensure they remain fit for purpose. Keep an eye out for your invitation to participate. 

The NMBA recently had the opportunity to engage with nurses and midwives at the Australian College of Nursing's National Nursing Forum and the Australian College of Midwives (ACM) conferences. After a long two years of lockdowns, these events focused on re-connecting nurses and midwives from across Australia to their key support networks as well as improving awareness on innovations in practice.  

Each month the NMBA makes decisions on approved programs of study leading to registration and endorsement. To see the up-to-date, searchable list of approved programs, please visit the Approved programs of study section on our website.

 6 women standing together behind a booth Woman standing behind a lectern

Images above: Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia and its policy team members at the Australian College of Midwives Conference 2022. 

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Registration

Registration renewal fees frozen for the second year

The NMBA has announced it will freeze the cost of registration renewal for nurses and midwives for the second year. We acknowledge the difficult circumstances our nurses and midwives are facing with the rise in cost of living, pandemic pressures and extreme weather events. The cost of renewing your registration will remain at $180 for the 2023 period. 

Our work to set and maintain the standards of the professions and support nurses and midwives to practise safely is funded by fees and the NMBA receives no ongoing government funding. 

Together, we can make cosmetic surgery safer for patients 

Nurses and midwives, we need your help to make cosmetic surgery safer for patients. Tell us if you see unsafe practice or patient harm.

We know that nurses working in the cosmetic surgery industry may witness unsafe practise or patient harm. We also know that nurses and midwives across Australia are providing patients with much needed follow up care when cosmetic surgery goes wrong. 

We can only act if we know. We are encouraging you to speak up for patient safety and report harm when you see it. You can make reports to the Cosmetic Surgery Hotline 1300 361 041. You can also make a notification online.

Making a notification is not a breach of your professional etiquette or ethics. It is consistent with professional conduct and your ethical responsibilities. It is the right thing to do. The National Law provides protection from civil, criminal and administrative liability for people who make a complaint in good faith. 

Case study: Risky and unprofessional behaviour 

Nurse A, a registered nurse working in a popular cosmetic surgery clinic, is concerned about the behaviour of Dr B, a doctor at the clinic. Nurse A has seen Dr B take pictures and videos of patients while they were under sedation. Dr B has been making jokes, dancing and talking to the camera while performing liposuction surgeries. Dr B also regularly asks Nurse A to provide aspects of care and treatment prior to surgery which are not within Nurse A’s scope of practice. Nurse A is concerned that Dr B is not focusing on patients during surgery and is putting patients at serious risk of harm. Nurse A should raise their concerns with Ahpra to protect the public. 

More information

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Students and graduates

Graduating soon? Apply for registration now!

Are you set to complete your course in the next three months? Take the first step in your new career as a nurse and/or midwife by applying for registration now.

Applying before you finish study means we can start assessing your application while we wait for your graduate results.

Registration with the NMBA is required before you can start working as a nurse or midwife, or both – and means you can work anywhere in Australia.

Easy steps to apply online

  1. Create your account using the online services portal and complete your application
  1. Upload your documents and pay the required fees. Check that you have provided all required documentation to prove you’ve met the registration standards, including certified copies of your photo ID.
  2. Wait for your education provider to provide your graduate results to Ahpra.

Once we’ve received your graduate results from your education provider and the NMBA are satisfied that you have met all the requirements for registration, we will finalise your application.

When you are registered, we will publish your name to the Register of Nurse and/or Register of Midwives, and you can start working as a nurse or midwife, or both!

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Spotlight

CATSINaM celebrates 25th anniversary and its powerful history of collective and individual activism

For 25 years, the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives (CATSINaM) has acted as the national peak professional organisation representing the collective voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives in Australia.

With a vision to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through increasing the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives CATSINaM looks to lead Australia’s nursing and midwifery professions through collaborative processes to improve education, health, and employment outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and particularly the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nursing and midwifery workforce.

In late August, at its National Conference and Gala Dinner, CATSINaM celebrated 25 years since its inception. The three-day event returned to its point of origin on Gadigal Country where it showcased the stories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives, launched the highly anticipated GENKE II report, and celebrated 25 years of collective and individual acts of activism.

‘Gettin em n keepin em n growin em’

The conference focussed on the launch of ‘gettin em n keepin em n growin em’: Strategies for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nursing and midwifery education reform (GENKE II).  The report honours previous work completed by the organisation in 2002 titled ‘getting em n keepin em’: Report of the Indigenous Nursing and Education Working Group (GENKE I) that aimed to address the detrimentally low numbers of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives in the workforce.

The GENKE II report recommendations highlight strategic areas for action to promote Cultural Safety in nursing and midwifery education and practice and to support the growth the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workforce.

The report recognises that the cultural knowledges and skills of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives are intrinsically linked to challenging racism in Australian health care systems and to improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

The NMBA supports the recommendations in the report and will work with CATSINaM to carry out its recommendations.

Access the full report on CATSINaM’s website.

Council of Deans of Nursing and Midwifery issue National Apology

On behalf of the Council of Deans of Nursing and Midwifery (CDNM), Chair Professor Karen Strickland,  apologised for the role of nursing and midwifery education and research in contributing to the harm and ongoing suffering of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives.

'I recognise that this apology will not erase the pain of the past, nor the intergenerational trauma that has occurred. But it’s a vital first step in our future, a vital first step towards healing, and a vital first step towards walking together, building on our shared history, learning from the mistakes of the past and it’s my hope that this apology opens a way forward to build a better future for nursing and midwifery in partnership with CATSINaM.'

Dr Lynore Geia, Bwgcolman woman, nurse, and midwife, responded to the CDNM Apology on behalf of CATSINaM.

'Purposeful action includes working together in real partnership for reform, recognising the unique knowledge and skills that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives bring to the professions in developing reforms for better education, research and clinical practice outcomes. An apology means we commit to each other to repair the professional breach and to also maintain a formal process of accountability to each other for the work we need to do and will do.'

Watch the full apology  and response online.

Commemorating 25 years of activism

To commemorate 25 years, 25 nurses and midwives were celebrated for their individual activism and commitment to improving the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. Among these were founding members such as Aunty Dulcie Flower and Dr Sally Goold and we encourage you to read their stories.

NMBA board member, Professor Catherine Chamberlain was also recognised by the CATSINaM Board for her significant professional achievements to the nursing and midwifery professions. Professor Chamberlain was awarded the 2022 CATSINaM Fellowship Awards.

CATSINaM also acknowledged collective acts of activism performed by groups or organisations from the inception of CASTIN in 1997 to the launch of the GENKE II report in 2022. This included the definition of Cultural Safety that was provided to the professions by CATSINaM in 2018.  The definition was then inserted in the Code of conduct for nurses and the Code of conduct for midwives with the expectation that nurses and midwives will embed Culturally Safe care into their practice.

The full list of collective and individual acts can be found on the CATSINaM website.

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Have your say

Focus groups for nurses and midwives who work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners

Are you a nurse or midwife who works closely with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners? Participate in a focus group near you. 

The NMBA and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia are working collaboratively to develop guidance for nurses and midwives on the role of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners.  

These focus groups will be provided as a safe space for you to give feedback on your experiences of working together in a multi-disciplinary team. 

Tea/coffee and light refreshments will be provided.

A certificate of attendance will be provided for one hour of CPD towards your annual requirement

Please note: these focus groups are only for nurses and midwives who work directly with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners

State/Territory

Date

Time (local time)

Location

Link

QLD

Mon 7 Nov 2022

10.00am

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Health Service (ATSICHS)

Woolloongabba Qld

Register here

NT (Urban)

Tues 8 Nov 2022

2.00pm

Royal Darwin Hospital

Building 4

Register here

NT

Wed 9 Nov 2022

10.00am

Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation

A Binyolkga Centre, Darwin

Register here

NSW (regional)

Tues 15 Nov 2022

10.00am

Virtual

Register here

WA (regional/remote)

Thurs 17 Nov 2022

10.00am

Virtual

Register here

SA (metro)

Mon 21 Nov 2022

12.30pm

Royal Adelaide Hospital

Register here

VIC (metro)

Wed 23 Nov 2022

10.00am

Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO)

Register here

VIC/NSW (regional)

Thurs 24 Nov 2022

10.00am

Albury Wodonga Aboriginal Health Service (AWAHS)

Glenroy

FULL

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Nursing and midwifery regulation at work: notification case studies

Former nurse resentenced and handed bigger penalty for continuing to practise after surrendering registration

A former registered nurse, Mr Alexis Travero Alvarez, has been resentenced on appeal in the County Court of Victoria for four charges of holding himself out as a registered nurse after he had surrendered his registration, in breach of section 116 of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law 2009

Read more

 

Nurse’s registration suspended after she engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a patient

A tribunal has suspended a nurse’s registration for three months for breaching professional boundaries with a patient and misleading her employer to the extent of their relationship. 

Trigger warning: Some readers may find this article distressing. If you are experiencing distress, please visit the NM Support website or contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 for help.

 

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Read the National Scheme news

 

Keep in touch with the NMBA

  • Visit the NMBA website for registration standards, codes, guidelines and FAQs.
  • Lodge an online enquiry form.
  • For registration enquiries, call 1300 419 495 (from within Australia) or +61 3 9285 3010 (for overseas callers).
  • Address mail correspondence to: Adjunct Professor Veronica Casey AM, Chair, Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia, GPO Box 9958, Melbourne, VIC 3001.

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Page reviewed 27/10/2022