US-trained nurse looking to migrate to Australia or New Zealand

  1. 2
    Hi,
    I am looking to migrate to Australia and/or New Zealand. The Australian cities I had in mind are Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. The New Zealand cities I had in mind are Wellington and Auckland.

    I graduated this month with my Bachelor of Science in Nursing from a US university. I also have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from another US university. I have several years of experience as a marketing analyst and as a nursing assistant. I also have 2 years experience as a nursing tutor/ educator assistant. I am scheduled to sit for the NCLEX-RN examination next month. I am enrolled in a Masters of Science Nursing program right now.

    - What are some options for me in terms of visa?
    - How do I go about applying for these options?
    - Do I need to get registered with AHPRA there or will my registration in the US be sufficient?
    - Are there any nursing hiring agencies you recommend I contact?
    - Should I apply for the masters degree programs there? Which universities have the best nursing programs there?

    I am very confused. Any advice is appreciated! Thank you very much.
    jjaros00 and littlenurse21 like this.
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  3. 44 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    You will need to get registered with either APHRA or New Zealand's nursing board. Having a US license isn't enough. You still have to meet requirements.

    Moving this to the International forum as asking a lot about immigration and not actual nursing in Australia/NZ
    ceridwyn likes this.
  5. 0
    Quote from BSNSN
    Hi,
    I am looking to migrate to Australia and/or New Zealand. The Australian cities I had in mind are Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. The New Zealand cities I had in mind are Wellington and Auckland.

    I graduated this month with my Bachelor of Science in Nursing from a US university. I also have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from another US university. I have several years of experience as a marketing analyst and as a nursing assistant. I also have 2 years experience as a nursing tutor/ educator assistant. I am scheduled to sit for the NCLEX-RN examination next month. I am enrolled in a Masters of Science Nursing program right now.

    - What are some options for me in terms of visa?
    - How do I go about applying for these options?
    - Do I need to get registered with AHPRA there or will my registration in the US be sufficient?
    - Are there any nursing hiring agencies you recommend I contact?
    - Should I apply for the masters degree programs there? Which universities have the best nursing programs there?

    I am very confused. Any advice is appreciated! Thank you very much.
    If you want to migrate then you will have to apply for a visa for permanent residency.

    You will need assessment for ANMC for DIAC - www.imm.gov.au
    then unfortunately, you will need to be assessed and Register with AHPRA - as Australia is not under US jurisdiction and is an independent country, it has its own jurisdiction and therefore registration of health practitioners from each country must be assessed independently to each countrys'' rules and regulations, policies, laws etc.

    New Zealand is also an independent country, seperate from the US and Australia and you will need to apply for a permanent residency there to immigrate and also need to be assessed and register with their nursing council as a nurse. Google nursing council, not sure of address and NZ immigration.

    nlcigat
  6. 0
    i have no idea about how to do it in new zealand. i can help you with australia though.

    - what are some options for me in terms of visa?
    there are many visa options for nurses. you can apply for a working holiday visa
    or have an employer sponsored working visa (457 visa)

    - how do i go about applying for these options?
    a. hire an agency
    b. learn it the hard way ... read the info over their website. dont worry as it is a very straightforward process.


    - do i need to get registered with ahpra there or will my registration in the us be sufficient?
    us license is applicable to usa only (and in canada, i think, for the nafta agreement)

    - are there any nursing hiring agencies you recommend i contact?
    there are a gazillion nursing agencies here. but finding the right one is like a hit and miss thing. you can head over here or here to begin your search.

    - should i apply for the masters degree programs there? which universities have the best nursing programs there?

    masters degree for what? thats a different path. in that case i suggest you apply directly to a university and get a student visa.

    as an overseas educated nurse, you have to undergo an orientation program.

    click here

    wishing you all the best!
  7. 0
    Nurses educated in the US or UK or Canada, UK and Ireland are not required to do órientation program, nor do they need IELTS. Also those who work for at least 3 months in one of these countries also is not required to do the 'bridging programs''. so there is no need to follow link.
  8. 0
    NAFTA for Canada and the US doesn't stop the license process each will have to pass NCLEX or CRNE to work in the country as a RN
  9. 1
    Hey there, I may not be of too much help, but I am starting this process as well. I've worked for about 2 years as an RN, and also have my Bachelor's. Currently working as a travel nurse in Cali. I'd love to chat with you along the way, maybe we can offer each other tips/hints.

    Anyway best of luck! The NCLEX isn't too bad
    jjaros00 likes this.
  10. 1
    I would STRONGLY suggest that you get some bedside experience before going to a foreign country. It is hard enough being a nurse in a country where things are somewhat familiar as compared to a foreign country (for example, there are different drug names). I know that in the UK you need at least one year's clinical experience and I wouldn't be surprised if Australia/NZ had similar requirements as you are not really qualified (in a safe sense) to practice alone even though you have your RN straight out of school and why would a foreign country educate a foreign nurse on a longer orientation than someone already experienced?
    jjaros00 likes this.
  11. 6
    Hey there! I just came across this and thought I'd throw in my two cents I currently work in an ED in PA, and have been working on things for just over a year to come to Australia. I'll finally be going over in late Aug/early Sept (FINALLYYYY!)
    It was a huge swamp of confusion when I started trying to figure out where to begin! I contacted a recruiting agency after a bit of research--- HealthStaffRecruitment. I've kept in contact with them the entire time, and they always pointed me in the right direction. You will have to apply for an Australian nursing license, and I'd start with that first, because it takes the longest (mine took about 7 months to come through). They have all the instructions on their website (just google AHPRA Australia) as to what you will need to send. You'll need a criminal background check, all of your official transcripts from school, birth cert, copies of ID, all that stuff, and a signed declaration (the link is on their website) that your schooling was taught and assessed in English. When you gather all this (the gathering was quite the process), send it! hah.. You will have to have your US nursing license before you apply though, because you must have it sent directly to AHPRA from the nursing board of whatever state you are working for (link is on your states nsg board website... mine cost about 40$). Now I know you want to migrate, but I think the best route is to get a work and holiday visa (info on the Australian Immigration Website). It's quicker, cheaper, and you'll get there faster--- and perhaps by doing this you can find sponsorship if a hospital enjoys your company This wasn't too bad-- you need a physical, chest x-ray, and bloodwork... but don't do any of it until they instruct you to. It took about 2 months to come through. Depending on where you want to work you will need to consider your experience. I work in the ED so I needed 2 years... I believe med-surg is at least 1 year, all other specialties are 2 (someone correct me if I am wrong!). You will also need to do one additional US criminal check (as it has to be within the last 6 months when you start the job hunt) and also an Australian Police Check. HSR (the agency) will point you in the right direction for all of this-- they are awesome!
    Well, I am off to work now, actually!! I hope this helps, and feel free to contact me if you have any questions!!!
    Julianne
  12. 1
    it depends on the ward that is hiring to the length of experience that is needed. There is a vast difference in Nursing in Oz as to the US if this site is true. It is up to the NUM if they want to hire you but experience is essential as my hospital still has GNP that are not placed, and as they have a 2 year contract they will be preferred over someone overseas without experience
    jjaros00 likes this.


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