Australian Nurse wants to work in USA - page 2

Hi allnurses community! I have some questions if anyone with experience can help. E3 visa. I have a Bachelors degree in nursing- Bachelor of Nursing Science. I have RN and advance EEN (LPN)... Read More

  1. by   Ausnurse720
    Oh and I was actually on the J1 when I initially came over looking for work, but you can just come over on the usual 3 month ESTA holiday visa while you look for work.
  2. by   espaghet
    Hi Ausnurse720, did you like working in Seattle? How was the pay there in comparison with other states? How many hours in peds/ob theory or clinical were you needing for California registration? Is it possible to obtain those in the state you currently live in?
  3. by   Ausnurse720
    Hey, yeah working in Seattle is ok. I was offered a job at one of the hospitals here but then it was rescinded because of the visa. I ended up getting a job at a big clinic here that has a surgery center. In New York I worked at a big hospital. The pay was MUCH better in NYC - unlike Australia, pay varies wildly from state to state and even hospital to hospital. It was tough taking the pay cut in Seattle but the taxes aren't as high here so it wasn't as bad as I initially thought. I'm a 4th year nurse and the pay average is around $35/hr. In NYC i was getting closer to $50. I've been told California has the highest pay. So you can really do well here as an RN.
    I'm still navigating the California issue - they wont tell me how many hours i'm 'deficient', it doesn't really matter as they just want you to do the courses all over again regardless. Some colleges do offer the Peds and OB courses on their own but from my research there aren't many (they want students to be enrolled in the whole nursing course rather than just take two of the courses). The ridiculous thing is that they want you to do various pre-requisites AS WELL AS the OB and Peds courses - so before you can even get to the courses, you have to pass various intro courses and general knowledge tests. It's disheartening and frustrating for sure but it's not impossible. Pre-rec requirements vary from college to college.
    I've been told they prefer you to do the courses in Cali but they'll take education from other states that is pre-approved.
    I hope that helps! Let me know if you have any other questions!
  4. by   espaghet
    Hi Ausnurse720, from my research as well, CA seems like the most difficult state to gain licensure from with a foreign education. Ive searched the website extensively, tried calling from Skype, emailing the CA BON, and searched here to find exactly how many clinical and theory hours in each nursing category (e.g. pediatrics) they require but have never found it.

    I am curious to know what you experience in your ongoing quest for CA licensure. Do you mean they won't tell you how many hours you were deficient even after getting your foreign transcript evaluated by CGFNS (assuming you had to do this for NY, right?). My instinct as well is that CA basically just wants you to do your degree over again--which is especially ridiculous because there is already a super high demand to even get into CA nursing programs.

    All I have found that is helpful is the "California RN licensure qualifications for grads of international nursing program" regulation which gives prerequisite requirements, total number of hours of theory/clinical, and the specification that theory/clinical has to be done during the same semester for each subject, which makes it very hard as not all nursing programs are set up like this. Have you looked at this yet? I'm not even sure I quite understand everything in this regulation but you may find it helpful.

    Being from the US originally, I know that the US is big on these general education courses but might I suggest maybe if you are committed to going to CA you could take the prereqs slowly at a community college while working (similar to polytec)? You also may be interested to hear CA is an insanely expensive state to live in tax-wise so even though you make a lot more per hour it may come down to similar standard of living as in Seattle (although I hear it is getting more and more expensive to live there).
  5. by   Ausnurse720
    Thanks for this info! Yeah, it's great to have a dialogue with other people who have experienced this!

    I've actually already applied with the CA board of nursing and had a lengthy conversation with the person evaluating my qualifications (note - since that initial conversation I haven't been able to get into contact with anyone there - they're so elusive and apparently reticent to communicate with applicants). This person told me that they're 'not allowed' to give me the actual hour amount I'm deficient in, which is bizarre. Regardless, they require me to do the entire Peds and OB courses again. Luckily they don't require the entire degree, just these two courses. However, as I mentioned, it's difficult to actually find a college that offers these as individual course and even then there are those pre-recs. And actually even if they DO offer these as individual courses, they only offer them if their full course students drop out and they all of a sudden have space in the class. YIKES! The best course I've found was at Santa Ana College, they require an intro course and then you have to take the TEAS test, which apparently tests general knowledge. Then you are on a waitlist for a spot to open up in a class and they preference previous students or students who need to make up a class before new students - the reason this college appealed to me was that they offer classes at night and their course structure appears to work well for students who are also working full time. It also seems relatively inexpensive. After phoning a good chunk of the schools around the LA area, this seems like the best deal, there are others that offer the individual courses, however their pre-rec requirements were more involved.
    And yes, I did the evaluation with CGFNS and then sat the NCLEX in New York.
    Honestly it feels like a total racket but it is what it is and there's no way of getting around it unfortunately. Right now I'm evaluating the options and yes, you're right - just getting these silly courses done one by one seems to be the only way.
    If anything changes or there are updates I'll post! Let me know if you end up pursuing any of it as well!
    So did you do your nursing degree in Australia then? Are you working as an RN there now?
  6. by   espaghet
    Well, my story is quite different but I may be trying to do something similar to what you're doing in the future. I'm a US citizen, NZ resident and decided to stay in NZ mostly because of my Kiwi boyfriend. I'm almost 1 out of 3 years done with my bachelor of nursing here in NZ. I plan to stay here for at least a year or so after my degree. Maybe longer, depends how homesick I am by then.

    Since I grew up in CA I have thought it would be nice to have the option of going back there one day to work as an RN. Norcal holds a dear place in my heart. But my mom lives in WA and she's not getting any younger so I think WA state is where I would first apply if I moved back to the US.

    I did undergrad (psychology) in Oregon so think I have some of the prereqs CA requires but not all of them.

    Here in NZ obstetrics nursing is all done by midwives and there are no pediatrics or obstetrics theory classes, per se, my tutors say some is spread out throughout the curriculum. No one seems to know exactly how many hours or is willing to evaluate it for me until I graduate. Likewise, CGFNS will not evaluate a hypothetical transcript or release information about previous NZ nursing transcripts. The boards of nursing leave it up to CGFNS or a third party equivalent. To me both of these things are THE MOST FRUSTRATING part about this situation for me. What sort of professional organization doesn't disclose what they expect before you apply to be licensed!? (Bureaucratic nonsense like this is one reason I prefer NZ, tbh). Also, you'd think it wouldn't be too difficult to do this on my school's end either.

    I thought it would make sense to sort it out while in the degree but so far I have learned that:
    WA will probably let me take the NCLEX as long as I get SOME theory and SOME clinical in maternity and pediatrics, which seems doable. However, CA sounds like: 1. there will be too many barriers or 2. it will be too time-consuming to jump through all their hoops. I will probably have to settle for another state--and I guess it's getting too expensive to live there anyway

    I like to hear about others in similar situations though, because if all of us put our heads together maybe there is a better way
  7. by   Jacintamolony
    Hi, I have been living in Seattle for two years and have had no luck finding a college or University that will allow me to do subjects in ob and peds without completing the entire degree.

    I've almost given up. I would be willing to travel interstate to complete the course if anyone knows of any???
  8. by   espaghet
    Hi Jacintamolony, what did the WA BON tell you you were deficient in (number of hours in theory, clinical, do you have to do them at the same time, etc.)?
  9. by   Ausnurse720
    Hi there, it's the California BON that say I'm deficient. I'm currently registered and working in WA!
  10. by   Ausnurse720
    Hey, are you looking for registration in WA or California??