New grad Filipino nurse wanting to work in Australia/New Zealand Part 2

World Registration


Due to recent changes regarding applications for International nurses to Australia and the combining of the nursing boards to one central nursing board in Australia AHPRA I have started a new thread for people to discuss the new process on working in Australia.

Currently New Zealand is not accepting new applicants from International trained nurses except those that meet the Trans Tasman Mutual Recognition Agreement {TTMR} this will be updated once the New Zealand nursing board reopen their books to International nurses.

Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency AHPRA

Part 1 thread New grad Filipino nurse wanting to work in Australia/New Zealand - Nursing for Nurses


223 Posts

thank you for this new thread, silverdragon.:up::up::up:


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.


Submit all the documents required by AHPRA (Australia Nursing Board) to their office. They will evaluate your application, if okey, then will send you an Eligibility Letter. You will have to undergo a 2-3 months Bridging(Training) Program in schools that offer such program (BP). That Eligibility Letter will be the proof you present to a school, that allows you to enrol in a BP.

You can choose any BP schools that you want to enrol. However, the application for enrolment is competitive as there are a limited slots per batch of BP. Moreover, each BP schools have different requirements like some requires 2 years experience, some zero experience, some 6 mos. experience. Thus, it is possible that you may not be accepted in one school but may be accepted in another school.

After successfully completing the BP, the school will prepare and submit a report to AHPRA about your classroom and clinical performance. Presumably, you will pass the BP, then AHPRA after receiving the report will consequently process your registration. Hence, you will become a Australian RN.


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.

POST # 2 AHPRA - Nursing & Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA)

Some of the Basic Requirements for Nursing Registration

Before 01 July 2010, there were 8 nursing boards in Australia. On 01 July 2010, 7 of the 8 nursing boards had merged into one, AHPRA / NMBA. The 1 remaining nursing board is that of Western Australia, which will eventually merged with AHPRA sometime late this year (hopefully so).

Please read the website ..

You will find in the website, among others, the following:

- IELTS requirement

- laws, rules and policies of nursing registration

- addresses/contact numbers of various offices of AHPRA / NMBA

- requirements for nursing registrations

- documents to be prepared, notarized, and submitted

- application forms, sample forms, sample CV..

As a RN applicant for registration in Australia, it is highly recommended for your own good (as it is your money that is at stake), to read the website of AHPRA.

Just to summarize, to apply/submit application to AHPRA you:

must have taken the IELTS with score of 7 in each subject,

must submit all the documents required by AHPRA as you may find/read in the website, and;

can apply even if you have zero nursing experience (please read next post for details on experience).


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.


1) Yes, AHPRA will accept (presumably will then approve) your application even if you have zero experience.

2) But, as I mentioned in POST # 1, the BP schools have their policies regarding experience. Thus, some BP schools will not accept you if you have zero experience.

3) During hunting/applying for job, it is the hospital/nursing home's decision whether to hire you or not regardless of your experience. So, you may find some difficulty finding work if you have zero experience, while others find it is easy to obtain job because they have extensive experience.

I hope this matter of experience are clear and settled as explained above.

"Employment Experience" = means your RN experience as a paid employee.

"Nursing Experience" = means your RN experience as a paid employee and/or as a volunteer nurse, and/or trainee nurse.

When applying for job, many hospitals/nursing homes will recognize your RN experience as a VOLUNTEER or TRAINEE nurse, in the sense that they will recognize that you have developed, enhanced and practiced your nursing skills through your clinical exposure as a volunteer / trainee nurse. However, when it comes to salary negotiation, that is totally a different matter. Chances are, they will not count your volunteer/trainee experience, obviously to save on salary expenses.

When applying for BP in schools, some schools will count volunteer / trainee experience, while I suspect some do not consider it. Better ask the BP schools and you may also ask other forum members who had undergone BP.


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.


In your certificate/s, it is highly recommended that the hospital/institution will write in your certificate the TOTAL NUMBER OF HOURS that you have worked in said institution. Also advisable is the phrase/clause that you have worked/served on a "FULL TIME BASIS" or "FULL TIME EMPLOYEE/VOLUNTEER/TRAINEE" that is if indeed you worked/served full time. Because, there is a difference between a RN who worked 600 hours on a full time basis, and a RN who worked 600 hours on a part-time basis.

For volunteer nurse, if you can, better have a certificate entitled STATEMENT OF SERVICE, instead of a Certificate of Volunteer Nurse. Just the same, indicate the number of hours and "full time" if you are really working full time..

If you can, also include in your certificate a clause/phrase which would served as your clearance ".....have no pending liabilities and is cleared from any obligations....etc...".

Depending on the institution you are working/serving, better also to include some sort of recommendation like "....Mr. Gwapo Gwapa is fit and competent to practice as a registered nurse...".

Just remember that in Australia, when someone is called NURSE, it is either he/she is an ENROLLED NURSE or a REGISTERED NURSE (unless you will really ask or clarify).. In other words, if you can, better indicate/emphasize in your certificate/s the words "registered nurse". Example, if possible I would rather have my certificate with words "staff RN" or "staff nurse (RN)", instead of just "staff nurse".

Anyway, as i wrote above, "IF YOU CAN".. if you cannot, well there's no problem at all, it's okey..


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.


Most of the BP schools are in Victoria: ETEA, VCHN, UB... Others are in Western Australia (WLI), South Australia (UniSA, Curtin).. I am not sure if the College of Nursing in Sydney is still offering BP.. As of now, there are no BP schools in Queensland.. Please check the websites of AHPRA and ANMC for the accredited BP providers/schools.. You may also ask some of the forum members here..

Usual tuition fee ranges from Aus $8,000 to Aus $10,000.. Vaccinations are required, please check each school's requirements.. There are scholarships or study-now-pay-later scheme for permanent residents ONLY..

BP is a mixture of classroom lectures and hospital/clinical duties. Written exam and return demo/practical exam.. So far, no Filipino RN has admitted that he/she failed the BP.. I believe them, and so it means, yes you can also pass the BP, but you must exert effort because it is definitely not a walk in the park..


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.


DIAC is the Australian agency that is in-charge of VISA.. Their website is .. Below are just an overview, better consult a professional on visa matters, or read/research about visa particularly the DIAC's website..

For the 2-3 mos. BP, you can apply for the 456 VISA which is cheaper and faster to process (less than 1 week from date of application).. As a 456 visa holder, you are NOT allowed to work part-time or full time.. When applying for this visa, better request/apply for a "multiple entry", it is very advantageous if you are approved of such.

You may also apply for Student Visa, which is a bit expensive and longer to process (1-3 mos.).. And YES, you are allowed to work part-time (i'm not sure but i think you can work part-time for 20-24 hours a week).. When applying for this visa, better request/apply for "allowed to apply for extension"; otherwise you are not allowed to do so and MUST go back home and re-apply/process your visa in your homeland..

REMEMBER.. Please check the EXPIRY of your VISA.. At any given time, you are NOT allowed to stay/study/work/live in Australia if your visa has expired..

After you finish/pass the BP, your license will be processed by AHPRA.. Once you are officially registered as RN, then you can now start hunting/applying for job.. (again you're visa must have not yet expired).. If you're visa is expiring and you haven't found a job yet, you may apply for extension of your visa(it's DIAC's decision whether to grant you or not), or you may choose to go back your homeland instead..

If you find an employer who is willing to "sponsor" you for a working visa (457 visa), then you with your employer will apply/process this 457 visa which will allow you to work in Australia.. Duration of your 457 visa will depend on the length of your job contract with your employer (maximum is 4 years)..

NOW WHILE PROCESSING this 457 visa and your existing visa is expiring, then you can apply for a "bridging visa" which will allow you to stay in Australia while waiting for the release/approval of your 457 visa that you have earlier applied for.. Once you receive your 457 visa, then you can start working legally..

Again, there are specific rules and obligations that you should do or not do as a visa holder, so better read the DIAC website, it is enumerated in there..


1,037 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg / ICU / Aged Care.

I'm tired writing... that would be all for today/tonite..

CERIDWYN ...... Would be glad to have necessary corrections to my above posts for any errors.. Thanks for your contribution to this thread..


1,787 Posts

Sounds fine, you know more than me, on applications as I have never had to do much except fill in a piece of paper when I registered, the uni did the rest or visa's. Have not needed one of those yet.

Better mention this second nursing course though, many questions on that, though until AHPRA actually start sending out assessments nobody really knows for sure what they think of any overseas qualification. Have heard gossip but nothing you can rely on. IELTS is the problem at the moment, bridging courses and unis in the past have asked lower scores and the results given to them, AHPRA on registration,wants all 7's and results sent directly to them before they will register, so there is already a problem just with this simple communication of results. This was reported in our union magazine.

mooh mooh

58 Posts

Specializes in Intensive Care, Medical-Surgical.

Thank you so much for the precious heaps of information, cioman94 and ceridwyn! Your kindness, dedication and generosity are all appreciated. :)


143 Posts

Specializes in Renal,Rehab,Oncology,Emergency.

Wow! 2 pages already for the new thread...

Cioman you have plenty of time on your hands. hehe... Nice compilation and segregation of infos... Cheers mate!

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