Difference between Australian and US/Canadian Nursing

  1. 0
    Hi,

    Just wondering what are some of the major differences between Australia and US or Canadian Nursing.

    Are there different medications that are used? Is the scope of practice of the nurse different? What level of care is the nurse providing (is it full care of bathing and toileting the patients or is there nursing assistants to help?)

    I'm mainly looking to find out what the big differences are. I'm in Canada with a BScN and am thinking about going to Australia on a short-term basis (6 months).

    Thanks
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  3. 6 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    There's lots of differences, ill try to mention a few big ones.

    No auxiliary staff: nurses in Aus do everything. We don't have CNAs to feed, toilet, clean etc patients. Our pharmacists don't make up our IV meds. No resp therapists. No techs to do ECGs/blood draws. No monitor tech.

    Yes our medications are different. Different names and sometimes we use meds for different things to the US.

    No head to toe assessments: most places (excluding ICU and ED) just do focused assessments on patients. Vital signs are known as observations or "obs" for short.

    No excessive over charting like the US (at least in the places I've worked).

    I think US nursing is a lot more theory and focused on labs/the science of it compared to your average Aus bedside nurse. There'd be exceptions of course but that's the impression I get from posts/threads on allnurses.
    redrn007 likes this.
  5. 1
    Canadian nursing is actually different in a lot of cases to the US and the OP is in Canada.

    Coming from the UK to Canada I found a lot of medications similar as well as learning new meds so I think this may be the same for the OP.
    AngelicDarkness likes this.
  6. 0
    Quote from Bringonthenight
    There's lots of differences, ill try to mention a few big ones.

    No auxiliary staff: nurses in Aus do everything. We don't have CNAs to feed, toilet, clean etc patients. Our pharmacists don't make up our IV meds. No resp therapists. No techs to do ECGs/blood draws. No monitor tech.

    Yes our medications are different. Different names and sometimes we use meds for different things to the US.

    No head to toe assessments: most places (excluding ICU and ED) just do focused assessments on patients. Vital signs are known as observations or "obs" for short.

    No excessive over charting like the US (at least in the places I've worked).

    I think US nursing is a lot more theory and focused on labs/the science of it compared to your average Aus bedside nurse. There'd be exceptions of course but that's the impression I get from posts/threads on allnurses.
    I have a few differing opinions on this post. We have AINs, if we are lucky and down on nurses, who will do the basic care, but RNs do a lot of this too. Some hospitals have techs for ECGs.

    Also, I have met a few canadian nurses and they have integrated just fine. Some hospitals, especially large ones, provide "transition programs" that assist a new nurse at the start, kind of like a preceptorship.

    I am actually considering going to canada to nurse for a while in a few years.
  7. 0
    Quote from canned_bread

    I have a few differing opinions on this post. We have AINs, if we are lucky and down on nurses, who will do the basic care, but RNs do a lot of this too. Some hospitals have techs for ECGs.

    Also, I have met a few canadian nurses and they have integrated just fine. Some hospitals, especially large ones, provide "transition programs" that assist a new nurse at the start, kind of like a preceptorship.

    I am actually considering going to canada to nurse for a while in a few years.
    CNAs seem to be responsible for certain duties in a shift eg: vitals, hygiene, I+Os, feeding. At least that's how I read it in allnurses posts.

    AINs (in my experience) are asked by the RN to assist the RN with their duties. Eg: RN "hey AIN, I'll feed Mrs Patient if you could shower Mr Patient for me that would be great". AINs (where I've worked) official job duties include restocking, specialing patients.

    But I guess it's different everywhere...
  8. 0
    Not all provinces have CNA,CCA or PCW so leaves the RN to do everything. I know where I live the hospitals only in the last couple years have used care workers to help but most still requires the RN or LPN to do everything
  9. 0
    Thanks for the comments. Keep them coming.

    Yes I am in Canada but I included US as well to try to get more comments.

    I actually worked in a small hospital with 11 acute care beds so we had both RNs and RPNs working but we worked in a total patient care model so whoever was assigned the patient, did all the care. We also did IVs, phlebolotmy, ECGs etc.

    I would love to hear more differences and thanks for the answers!


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