Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia - September 2023
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September 2023


Message from the Chair

Graduates are getting ready to enter the workforce as newly registered midwives and nurses. If you’re a nursing or midwifery student about to graduate, read our helpful hints to get you prepped for the start of your career. 

In this issue you can read about what’s next for RN prescribing and our recent partnership with the Burnet Institute to conduct a comprehensive review of the midwifery workforce. Our registration fees for 2023/24 have also been announced and you can learn more about what to expect at renewal next year below. 

Consultation closes soon on the draft Registration standard: General registration for internationally qualified registered nurses be sure to head to our consultations page and let us know what you think. 

The Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives (CATSINaM) has released its Statement on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament. As CATSINaM is the peak body for Indigenous nurses and midwives the NMBA wants share this statement with you. This choice is a deeply personal one and I encourage you to do your own learning by drawing on factual sources to help inform your decision.

Best wishes,

Adjunct Professor Veronica Casey

Chair, Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia

Veronica Casey   

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Call for applications

Interested in joining a state or territory board of the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia?

We are seeking applications from registered nurses and midwives and/or community applicants from Australian Capital Territory, Tasmania, South Australia and Queensland.

  • Applications open: Saturday 19 August 2023
  • Applications close: Sunday 1 October 2023.

To apply and for more information visit Ahpra’s opportunities page.

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NMBA news

Partnership with Burnet Institute and colleagues to review the midwifery workforce 

The health workforce of Australia is facing significant challenges, prompting a new research partnership titled Midwifery Futures, to help build the midwifery profession for future generations.

Midwifery Futures is an in-depth review of Australia’s midwifery workforce sector being conducted by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) in partnership with The Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health (the Burnet Institute) and colleagues to set the foundation for the continued growth and sustainability of the midwifery profession.

NMBA Chair Adjunct Professor Veronica Casey AM said the project could have a major impact for the Australian public. 

'Women and families experience better outcomes when midwives are involved in their care and we want to ensure that the profession can grow to safely support the Australian public needs across all geographical and socio-economic backgrounds for future generations’, Adjunct Professor Casey said. 

We will provide you with regular updates on the progress of this important work. Read the media release 

Consultation opening soon - have your say on non-surgical cosmetic procedure guidelines

In the coming months, we will open consultation on proposed practice and advertising guidelines for non-surgical cosmetic procedures. 

The consultation will include proposed:

  • Guidelines for nurses who perform non-surgical cosmetic procedures (Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia’s guidelines)
  • Guidelines for registered health practitioners who perform non-surgical cosmetic procedures (shared guidelines), and
  • Guidelines for registered health practitioners who advertise non-surgical cosmetic procedures (cosmetic advertising guidelines for all practitioners performing non-surgical cosmetic procedures).

The NMBA has identified the need to raise the regulatory status of the current Position statement: Nurses and cosmetic medical procedures (the position statement) to reflect a similar approach to the Medical Board of Australia (MBA) and their recently released Guidelines for registered medical practitioners who perform cosmetic surgery and procedures (MBA’s cosmetic guidelines). 

The draft guidelines have been developed from and generally mirror the advice from the NMBA’s current position statement. However, they will capture additional topics identified within the MBA’s cosmetic guidelines. For example, there will be a stronger emphasis on informed consent and pre-procedure consultation including a client suitability assessment, particularly for those under the age of 18. 

The proposed new advertising guidelines are likely to look at before and after images, claims around expertise and qualifications and the ban on the use of testimonials. There will also be greater clarity about the use of influencers in advertising for procedures.

The guidelines will apply to all enrolled nurses, registered nurses and nurse practitioners who work in the non-surgical cosmetic space.

Have your say on the proposed changes

Public consultation on the proposed guidelines is expected to begin in October. We anticipate releasing the new guidance in the first half of 2024.

Keep an eye on the Ahpra and NMBA consultation pages for further updates.

Next steps for registered nurse prescribing

We recently closed consultation on the regulation impact statement after receiving over 120 responses to the options and impacts we put forward for a proposed model of designated registered nurse (RN) prescribing. 

The proposed model will enable RNs with an endorsement for scheduled medicines to prescribe within their level of competence and scope of practice, in partnership with an authorised prescriber such as a medical practitioner or a nurse practitioner. The designated RN prescriber will  have authorisation to prescribe medicines that is determined by legislation and will also need to meet the requirements of the NMBA related to the endorsement, and the policies of the jurisdiction, employer or health service. 

With overwhelming support for designated RN prescribing, we will be submitting a decision regulation impact statement with the preferred option to the Office of Impact Assessment and health ministers for review. We will be sure to keep you updated on the outcomes. 

Updates from recent NMBA meetings

In partnership with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practice Board of Australia, we have endorsed a new guideline for nurses and midwives working with Aboriginal Health Practitioners. The purpose of this guideline is to improve a nurse or midwife’s understanding of the role and scope of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioners and how the professions can better work together to improve the health outcomes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. 

Recent appointments

We are pleased to announce that Adjunct Professor Veronica Casey AM has been reappointed as the Chair of the NMBA for a period of three years and welcome South Australian practitioner member Paula Medway to the National Board for her first term. 

We would also like to thank Associate Professor Linda Starr for her important contributions to the regulation of the nursing and midwifery professions over her many years supporting the South Australian and national nursing and midwifery boards. 

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.

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Fees set for 2023/24

The NMBA has announced its fees for 2023/24 midwives and nurses. 

Registration fees fund the work of Ahpra and the NMBA to keep the public safe. We work to keep fees as low as possible while continuing to meet regulatory obligations and the expectations of the public and practitioners. The National Boards and Ahpra receive no government funding.

The fee for general registration has been set at $185 and will apply to the majority of nurses and midwives in the next registration renewal period in early 2024. Registrants who hold both nursing and midwifery registration will only need to pay one registration renewal fee.

The fee for nurses and midwives whose principal place of practice is New South Wales is also $185 (NSW is a co-regulatory jurisdiction).

Nurses and midwives continue to pay one of the lowest registration fees of all the professions in the National Scheme. The NMBA was able to freeze the fees of nurses and midwives for the past three years. Including this year’s increase, there has only been a total rise to the general registration fee by $10 since 2018.

You can read more about how registration fees fund our work and see all fees for the next financial year on the NMBA website. 

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Students and graduates

Graduates, finishing study in the next three months? Register now

If you’re due to finish your studies in the next three months, you can apply for registration now. 

Getting your application in early helps avoid any delays and helps get you into the workforce sooner. If you apply before you finish your study, we can start assessing your application while we wait for your graduate results.

Before you can start working as a nurse or midwife you must be registered with the NMBA.

Easy steps to apply online 

  1. Create your account using the online services portal and complete your application
  2. 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.
  3. Wait for your education provider to provide your graduate results to Ahpra.

Handy hints to help you apply

Watch our video to get your application right.

You’ll find helpful advice, tips for avoiding common causes of delay and downloadable information flyers on the graduate applications page of the Ahpra website.

How long does it take to get registered?

We aim to finalise your application within two weeks of receiving your graduate results. Get your application right and submit it to us before you finish studying, so we can be ready to go when your results come in. 

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

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Have your say

Have your say on the draft Registration standard: General registration for internationally qualified registered nurses

The NMBA is consulting on a draft registration standard, with two new pathways designed to streamline processes for eligible internationally qualified registered nurses (IQRNs), who have already been registered and have practised as a registered nurse in an NMBA-approved comparable international regulatory jurisdiction.

Assisting suitable internationally qualified nurses and midwives (IQNM) to register in Australia is a priority for state, territory and federal governments, the NMBA and Ahpra. Streamlining the registration of IQNMs has the potential to contribute to easing workforce pressures in services across all Australia through the supply of critically needed safe, competent and effective practitioners.

IQRNs who would usually be required to complete the NMBA’s Stream B outcomes-based assessment pathway, who are assessed as meeting the proposed requirements as well as meeting the NMBA’s mandatory registration standards, would, under one of the two new pathways, be eligible to apply for general registration with the NMBA.  

More information on the draft standard and how to make a submission can be found on the consultations webpage. The public consultation will close 20 October 2023. 

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CATSINaM releases statement on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice

The Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives (CATSINaM) has recently released a Statement on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice calling for unity and strength through caring. CATSINaM is the peak advocacy body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nurses and midwives in Australia and we encourage all nurses and midwives to read the statement and reflect on its contents. 

Read CATSINaM’s Statement on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice

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Nursing and midwifery regulation at work: notification case studies

The NMBA publishes summaries of tribunal decisions about nurses and midwives as professional learning case studies. All information in these summaries has been made publicly available by the relevant tribunal before the NMBA publishes its summary.

Nurse who spat at her elderly patient disqualified from applying for registration for two years

A tribunal has cancelled a nurse’s registration and disqualified her from applying for two years after she spat at a vulnerable patient and used vulgar language.

Read more

Overuse of physical force sees enrolled nurse’s registration suspended

A tribunal has suspended and imposed conditions on an enrolled nurse’s registration after he used unnecessary physical force on a mental health patient. 

Read more

Nurse who stole medications and practised under the influence has registration cancelled by tribunal

A tribunal has cancelled a nurse’s registration and disqualified her from applying for registration for six months after it was found that she had stolen Schedule 4 and 8 medicines and practised under the influence. 

Read More

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Read the National Scheme news


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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 27/11/2023