How to Get a Job As a Nurse in Australia

Nurses, doctors and dentists in Australia.

It is true to say that there is a shortage of nurses, doctors and indeed, dentists here in Australia. So how easy is it for those from the medical professions to qualify for Permanent Residency (PR) or an Employer Sponsored nurse Workers Visa?

The popular belief is that it is very easy indeed, but you should bear in mind that there are criteria that have to be met.

  • Your age.
  • Your ability to speak the English language.
  • Your current qualifications and the country in which you obtained them.
  • Your qualifications will need to be assessed by the relevant authority here in Australia.
  • Upon successful assessment, you will need to obtain registration (see more information about this further below) with one of the state or territory nursing registration boards.
  • If you are a GP, you can get more help on my page How to Get a Job As a Doctor in Australia.

I have deliberately been non-specific about these criteria they are subject to change by the Australian Government. For that reason, the best source for up-to-date information is the Department of Home Affairs website, two very useful links are below.

Doctors and Nurses in Australia: Your questions answered

Click on the following links for further information…


The registration of Internationally Qualified Nurses and Midwives is handled by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. They have a downloadable PDF which can help you with this process. You can get this document from their page called Registration and Endorsement, but there is also a good deal more helpful information on their website, so do have a good look around.


Please see my page about job sponsorships.

More useful links:

The following posts from my blog may be of interest.

Important: Please read before commenting…

And for those looking for professional assistance…

Get an Assessment for an Australian Visa
{ 512 comments… add one }
  • Mahi July 5, 2015, 9:40 pm |

    Hi my name is Mahi . I have completed my General nursing midwifery diploma of 3 and half years and got RN from India.Currently I am student of business in Brisbane because I couldn’t get good scores in ielts to do further bachelor of nursing . But I am still interested in nursing my friends suggest me about OET. Please advise me what I can do or what are the benefits of OET for me please reply me please. I will be highly thankful to you.

  • dilli babu July 1, 2015, 7:07 pm |

    I have completed my B.Sc nursing, i would like to work in australia.Regard this What step i have to follow and do.
    Thanking you sir,

  • dilli babu July 1, 2015, 6:57 pm |

    good evening sir,

  • sharan June 14, 2015, 1:58 pm |

    I hv done nursing from India .. I am working in JCI accredited hospital after getting 2 yrs experience can I move to Australia on work permit basis …I want to get rn and PR of Australia.. reply please

  • seetta vaisakh June 4, 2015, 11:47 pm |

    hi,i am a staff nurse in KSA,searching for job a job oppurtunity as a registered nurse in Australia .i heared amessage from a couple of my friends thart it is possible to work in Australia without IELTS.let me know the details of further procedures.

  • BobinOz June 2, 2015, 8:35 pm |

    I can’t tell anybody whether they are able to register and work as a nurse here, you need to follow the information in the above post, click through the links and go through the process for yourselves.

    If you are in doubt, please consult with a MARA registered migration agent.

  • Rechu June 1, 2015, 6:34 pm |

    Hi Sir,

    My frnd has done BSc nursing. Immediately after tat she was registered and worked as a nurse for 1 year. then done her MSc nursing for 2 years. After that she has worked as a nursing tutor (where there is no clinical experience) for 3 years. So she would like to know if its possible for her to apply for the registration with this work experience.
    We would be thankful if you could reply us soon.
    Thank you!

  • Mariola May 10, 2015, 9:21 pm |

    Hi! i am a general nurse with a 4-year university degree in my country.
    I can speak english, french and italian. i am married and i have too girls.
    do i have any posibility to emigrate and work as a nurse in Austarlia with my family.
    My husband is an officer and he is a lawer too.

  • maheshi senarath May 4, 2015, 10:39 pm |

    i’m from srilanka.i’m intersted working in australia.i’ve been working for 6yers as a nurse in srilanka.also my husband has been working ror 10 years as a nurse in srilanka,we would like to work in ausrtali.thank you.
    [email protected]

  • Pooja May 1, 2015, 10:00 pm |

    I have done MBBS and MD Pediatrics degree from India in 2012. I wish to migrate to Australia. Please advise me the procedure.

    • BobinOz May 4, 2015, 2:47 pm |

      All the help I can give you is in the above article. Thanks, Bob

  • J.Uma April 15, 2015, 2:47 pm |

    I completed General nursing midwife in 3years 6 month in internship in 2011.2 years experience in medical college in India
    . after I will studied in post basic nursing in 2014. now I’m working as a staff nurse in one hospital in India would like to shift to abroad especially Australia what are all the steps that I have to go through for moving to Australia. please provide valuable information.

    • kudrat May 14, 2015, 12:14 pm |

      Hi Uma, you can work as a nurse in Australia after doing Initial registration of overseas nurses course which is offered by Australian Centre of further education in Melbourne, Victoria. For more information you can visit their website
      or alternatively email on [email protected]

    • Arpit December 14, 2017, 10:13 pm |

      Apa muje mail kejeye [email protected]

  • Jeesih Mekiong March 22, 2015, 9:49 pm |

    Hi… I am interested working in Australia. I’ve been working for 19 yrs as a Nurse in Malaysia. My experienced as a Midwifery for 8 yrs before been promoted as a Nurse manager in Medical Department till now. I know it’s not easy but can you give me some adviices how to get this application…. Thank you very much. Me.. Jess

    • BobinOz March 23, 2015, 5:15 pm |

      All the help I can offer is in the above article and through those links, if you need more specific help, you really should speak to a MARA registered migration agent.

  • johnny February 26, 2015, 6:48 am |

    Hi there I wud like to knw more info on staff nurse work permit in Australia…. My sister has 6yrs of experience including india n UAE……n nw she is interested in working in Australia….any info wud be of a great help

    • BobinOz February 26, 2015, 7:33 pm |

      You need to click through on the relevant links in the above article to investigate how to get that permit.

  • Kym February 13, 2015, 7:29 am |

    Hi Bob, been reading your articles in the oz magazine for a couple of years now and only just discovered your site tonight- am glued to it! Sophie I am a RMN applying for the 189 pr visa with partner and 3-year old in tow – if you go for this visa you have no work restrictions – once you have permanent residency you can work as much or as little as you like, or even change careers! Hope that helps.
    Also, been reading some of the posts on here (or attempting to) – foreign nurses beware – you will have to get a high score on the English test before you can practice in Oz! Bob you have some patience replying to some of these posts – you should be a nurse 😉 Keep up the good work!

    • BobinOz February 13, 2015, 5:47 pm |

      Glad you found my site in the end Kym. Me a nurse? That’s funny 🙂 My patience only extends to the written word after I’ve counted to 10, in a live real-time situation, I’m as grumpy and short tempered as they get 🙂

  • Sophie January 21, 2015, 8:33 pm |

    Hi Bob, I love your site! I wondered if you or any other fellow bloggers might be able to answer my question-
    Is a condition of being the primary visa applicant (189 or 457, not sure yet) that you work full time? I am a registered nurse so I would apply with my partner (in marketing/web design) and our 1 year old daughter as my secondary family applicants. I would quite like to work 30 hours a week, if possible. If any one can answer my question would be very grateful, thank you! 🙂

  • NISHIT January 13, 2015, 2:34 am |

    hi mam,
    / A very gooood evening to you from india.Myself Dr.Nishit Rajyaguru and I m an anaesthesiologist working in OT and icu.I have totally 4 yrs of experience and I have completed DIPLOMA IN ANAESTHESIOLOGY.I have wide experience of conducting all the Major and supramajor OTs and can work in INTENSIVE CARE UNIT.

    pls guide me the ways how i can be elligible for applying to ICU and OT.I m not given IELTS yet.pls give me proper suggestions.I m really desperate to come to australia and settlel there.

  • Tota January 2, 2015, 4:37 pm |

    I Am Registered Nurse In Saudi Arabia , what kind of visa i need to work Australia.
    and how is hard to get a job as Nurse new graduate in Australia .
    Please, wait for an answer.

    • BobinOz January 4, 2015, 9:37 pm |

      You need to speak to a MARA registered migration agent for which type of visa would be best for you, and you also need to use the links in the above article to work out whether your qualifications are recognised here and you can practice as a nurse in this country.

      • A.INFANT RANI January 10, 2015, 5:59 am |

        Hai sir this Infant rani from india i have completed masters in nursing as obg nurse. i would like to work as RN in Australia. now i am working in saudi as nurse specialist wt is procedures pls help me.

  • saima talat December 30, 2014, 12:03 pm |

    Hi.bob plz plz reply me….me waiting 4 ur ans.plz

  • saima talat December 29, 2014, 9:14 am |

    Hi bob, my degree B.E.M.S (bachelor of eastern medicine)…i want to know that there in australia any scope,they accepted for there hospitals as a herbal doc.or pharmacy….any kind…with this degree…plz plz i m vv thankful to u if u guide me rite way…thanks

  • kamaljeet kaur December 20, 2014, 2:01 am |

    I Am Registered Nurse In India.i completed (post Basic Nsg.).i Want To Know How To Work As Nurse In Fiance In Australia Md He Applied my Fiance Whn I Get Visa Thn Which procedure Is Better for me To Get A Job In Australia.plz Gve Me suggetion.thnx

  • rabia umer December 8, 2014, 12:47 am |

    hello ,i am nurse want to work and live in Australia can i ? please help me

  • Nithin November 20, 2014, 7:21 pm |

    Hi bob, my brothr is just short of a few months to complete doctorate in naturopathy( ayurveda ) and he wish to work abroad what are steps to check out if this is feasible.

    • BobinOz November 21, 2014, 10:21 pm |

      I really have no idea what the process is, all I can suggest is that you use the links in the above article to do some research, or if you want to take the shortcut, have your brother go through my Visa Assessment Service and my MARA agent would be able to guide him.

      Cheers, Bob

  • Ekta patel October 29, 2014, 6:37 pm |

    I have done GNM from India want to know how can I get job in Australia .Is there some course after which I can get job in Australia as a nurse.
    Thank u

  • Charles Nyathi October 29, 2014, 4:56 pm |

    l am a nurse and I need a job in Austria please help me’

  • Haddis Negusie October 21, 2014, 2:43 am |

    Dear sir i am ethiopia refugee in yemen i have diploma in nursing i have been
    living since 1993 long time i would immigrate to australia do you have way to find visa
    for refugee nurse
    your sincerely
    Haddis Negusie

    • BobinOz October 22, 2014, 12:01 am |

      Not something I can help with, but if you Google “Immigration Advice and Rights Centre (IARC)” they may be able to advise you. Good luck, Bob

  • yek doryn October 13, 2014, 5:12 am |

    im in africa do u also employ african certificate nurses

  • sani October 7, 2014, 1:14 am |

    hi boby,
    i am a registered nurse from Indian nursing council.
    i am also registered nursen from saudi commision for health( MOH).
    can i move to australia as a nurse
    I have total 12 year experiance (4 year India and 8 year Gulf)
    My 1st cousin living australia in perth area
    How can move australia, what type of visa choose
    plz reply

    • BobinOz October 7, 2014, 9:01 pm |

      Same answer as I’ve given to Megan immediately above your comment.

  • Megan October 2, 2014, 10:37 pm |

    Hi I am just about to qualify as a general nurse in the UK and am interested in moving to auz as soon as possible to work as a RGN. What would I need to do in order to do this?

    • BobinOz October 3, 2014, 6:11 pm |

      Hi Megan

      This is not a process I can help you with, it’s quite complicated, that’s why I have referred to other websites for information through the links in the above article. Your only other alternative would be to seek the assistance of a MARA registered migration agent or maybe a specialist recruitment company.

      Good luck, Bob

  • xyz September 28, 2014, 7:44 pm |

    I’m a registered G.N.M nurse from India karnataka registration in year 2005 worked for 1.6 years in maharashtra in C.C.U in a heart hospital. Can u tell me the qualifications required the hours and work experience and other criteria services to apply for nursing jobs in Australia Australians which is the best place to work in australia

    • BobinOz September 29, 2014, 11:34 pm |

      No, I’m sorry, I can’t advise you on this, you should really be talking to a MARA registered migration agent and/or an expert in recruitment for nursing, I am neither. Or you can use the links in the above post to find out more information for yourself.

  • Manisha Sharma September 10, 2014, 2:21 pm |

    I have graduated from United States of America as a Registered Nurse in 2010 with 3 years of experience. I have lodged in an application with AHPRA and ANMAC. Looks like they take a long time ? How long are they taking as of September 2014? Has anyone lodged in an application with them as well? I am really worried since I need to get the license as soon as possible. Who has had this problem before? Really appreciate someone’s reply and a comment to help me at this moment.

    • BobinOz September 10, 2014, 9:43 pm |

      I have no idea how long it takes at the moment, can anyone else help Manisha out here?

    • lele November 17, 2014, 2:34 pm |

      Hello Manisha, at the moment AHPRA is taking time to review your documents because I have changed their reulations for Internationally qualified overseases nurses. You could check the website at to read on the details. But sooner you can read a reply from them It is much better if you can directly email your registration officer too.

  • Payam September 3, 2014, 1:39 am |

    Hi Bob
    thank you for your really helpful website.
    I’m 26 yrs old and recently got my bachelor of nursing and midwife in International university in Thailand.
    I’m wondering am i need to take bridge program or not ? and also I cant take licence here bcz its in Thai language, so am I require to have any licence or I can just take Australian licence ?

    • BobinOz September 3, 2014, 9:39 pm |

      I wish I could help, but I really don’t know what you need to do to qualify to work here, you would need to click on the links in the above article for more help. I’m pretty sure it’s not easy, Australia only recognises qualifications from certain countries for nurses. Good luck, Bob

    • lele November 17, 2014, 1:50 pm |

      Hi payam, I will suggest that you contact the AHPRA Nursing & Midwifery council to know the requirements needed.

  • rana September 2, 2014, 7:09 am |

    i am a doctor ,passed mbbs in 2006 from Bangladesh.I want to live in Australia.there is a option of study in masters in clinical nursing,then work there as a registered nurse and obtain PR card. is it possible?is there any option of getting nursing job with my qualification as a doctor?
    thanks.i am looking forward to hearing from u.

    • BobinOz September 2, 2014, 5:15 pm |

      I couldn’t tell you rana, this is something you need to ask of a MARA registered migration agent. If you go through my Visa Assessment Service, my agent could look at your skills and qualifications and see if there is any pathway for you to obtain PR here in Australia.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Melissa August 10, 2014, 8:47 pm |

    Hi my partner is from Switzerland, is a Registered nurse in Accident and Emergency with 4 years experience. His qualification complies with the EU 2005/36/ec education standard, He is 30 yo.
    He applied for a skills assessment with ANMAC as a requirement to apply for a 189 skilled migration visa, however his skills assessment letter of determination was declined due to Switzerland not being a formal member of the EU.
    Eventhough, Switzerland has a charter agreement with the EU on Education standards and the freedom of movement of people across Europe.
    Do you have any info or knowledge of Swiss Registered Nurses being able to find a way to gain entry to live and work in Australia?

    • BobinOz August 11, 2014, 6:19 pm |

      I’m not surprised you have had trouble, I’ve heard that only a very small handful of countries nursing qualifications are recognised here in this country. I’m afraid I can’t help though, I’m not sure what you would need to do to get registered and accepted, I think you may need to speak to a MARA agent to see if anything can possibly be done.

      Sorry I can’t be more helpful, but good luck.

  • Mishu August 4, 2014, 8:12 pm |

    I am non professional in the field of nursing. But I saw that there is scope for nursing field.
    I even heard that though we are not from nursing faculty but can do nursing course in Australia and get job accordingly. Is it possible for me to get PR ?

    • BobinOz August 5, 2014, 6:32 pm |

      That’s not a question that can be answered with such limited information, if you really want to know what your options are please consider going through my Visa Assessment Service.

  • Tijo August 2, 2014, 10:17 pm |

    Hi my name is Tijo and I’m from India. Im planning to do Bsc nursing. In Darwin Australia, is there any possibility to get a pr after the completion of my course at Charles Darwin university???

    • BobinOz August 4, 2014, 12:46 am |

      I don’t know Tijo, this isn’t a yes or no question, is more complicated than that and I would suggest you discuss your options with a MARA registered migration agent closer to the time.

  • Salman July 22, 2014, 2:31 am |

    i m a BSC nurse and having one year experience in international hospital. i like australia and australians very much.i wana work as a nurse there in australia. plz guide me about the politics of hiring job in australia. i love australia.

  • jenny July 11, 2014, 7:27 pm |


    I have completed MBBS from India, have cleared AMC MCQ and have a score of IELTS 7. I want to move to australia with my husband and kid. How do I get PR/ temporary visa. Can I take your services. I am based in India.

    • BobinOz July 13, 2014, 10:44 pm |

      Hi Jenny

      Sounds like you need to be speaking to my MARA migration agent, he can give you your best options and let you know how to proceed. Simply go through my Visa Assessment Service, it’s all explained on that page.

      Cheers, Bob

  • Harpreet June 29, 2014, 3:52 am |

    Hi my name is harpreet. I have cpmpleted GNM nursing last year , and I have 1 year experious .how I can apply for PR in australia

  • Rajinder kaur June 28, 2014, 3:00 pm |

    Plz give me reply Bob

    • BobinOz June 29, 2014, 1:01 am |

      Rajinder, I haven’t answered your question because you haven’t bothered to read any of the information I have provided. Do spend some time reading the information I have provided, you will get your answer.

      Now, please stop nagging me. Have you heard of something called the weekend? I do not have a 24/7 support team.

  • Rajinder kaur June 27, 2014, 6:47 pm |

    Plz plz reply

  • Rajinder kaur June 26, 2014, 6:05 pm |

    Hi I am Rajinder kaur complete Gnm diploma of nursing from Khalsa college of nursing ,have a nursing experience nd i m do work as a nurse in the Australia nd become a registered nurse so plz give me opportunity to do work in Australia nd give the way of in future plz plz reply

    • BobinOz June 26, 2014, 8:39 pm |

      I don’t personally help people one-on-one, all the advice I have is in the above article. Good luck, Bob

      • Rajinder kaur June 26, 2014, 9:19 pm |

        Sir I say how to move australia nd get PR in Australia through nursing just provide way to which type of test clear for going to australia

  • Kamma June 20, 2014, 4:18 am |

    Hi BobinOz… and extended community. 😉

    I’m currently reading to Medical Laboratory Scientist, and someone told me there was a bit of a shortage of that profession Downunder. I’m a bit doubtful, but I don’t know.
    Anyone in the know?

    • BobinOz June 20, 2014, 11:10 pm |

      Personally I have no idea, can anyone else help?

  • parbhdeep June 18, 2014, 6:14 pm |

    hii..i have dond G.N.M nursing 3 year 6 month from india now i am pursuing 2 yr post basic bsc finance is not P.R. in australia…tell me how i go to brisbane,australia after marriage

  • mahalpreet June 16, 2014, 8:08 pm |

    m done my GNM nursing from india and want go australia.which courses offered me australia to become RN in australia and duration of course

  • Shawn May 27, 2014, 11:54 am |

    Bob, I’am hoping you can just get me in contact with someone who can answer questions pertaining to dentistry. I’m a US trained Dental Hygienist with over ten years experience and would like to do remote medicine in all parts of Australia. Can you offer any advice or contacts ? ~Shawn

    • BobinOz May 28, 2014, 5:22 pm |

      Hi Shawn, I’m going to send you an email about this, speak later. Cheers, Bob

      • Shawn May 30, 2014, 7:22 am |

        Thanks Bob I look forward to hearing from you . ~Shawn

  • Elvie Jkent May 18, 2014, 9:23 am |

    I am amazed reading posts here and thought of getting myself in. I’m a RN from Philippines and I got 2 yrs experience as OB nurse then I came here in Saudi Arabia as a dental assistant for almost 4 yrs now. I wished to work in Australia as a dental nurse/ assistant, planned to get ielts once given the chance to work there. Is there a possibility that I could work there?

    Thanks a lot!

    • BobinOz May 19, 2014, 2:31 pm |

      I don’t know, much depends on whether your qualifications are recognised here.

  • manjit May 12, 2014, 3:09 am |

    I am GMN staff nurse and 5 years experience.5 bands in ielts.can i apply for PRin Australia.

    • BobinOz May 12, 2014, 2:56 pm |

      Please click through on the relevant link in the above post for information about working as a nurse here in Australia.

  • marco April 19, 2014, 7:15 pm |

    Hi Bob,
    Wow your web site is pretty cool and so many people are leaving comments on your blog. Good job!! Well i am a registered nurse who has 6years of experience working in ICU in Hong Kong. I was officially registered with the AHPRA few months ago and i am 28, so i can pretty much move to Australia any time i want now. I have great interest in Brisbane because i love scuba diving! Well my problems are not as complicated as the other people on the blog lol Could you name a few big hospitals for me near the city centre please and also which area would you recommend for me to live in as a single guy? And do you think i will need a car to get around when i first arrive? Thanks bob!!

    • BobinOz April 22, 2014, 5:00 pm |

      Hi Marco

      Before we start talking about Brisbane, I’m pretty sure this city isn’t best known for its scuba-diving. Maybe Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef would be a better bet? I might be wrong about that though, I am not into scuba-diving myself, but it may be worth checking out if you haven’t already done so.

      As for hospitals, I think the main ones are Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, The Wesley and the Princess Alexandra Hospital’s. Cars are very helpful around here, unless you live close to the city and as a young guy, you will probably want to choose suburbs close to Paddington, the West End or Fortitude Valley, that’s where most of the nightlife is.

      Good luck, Bob

  • B April 18, 2014, 8:09 am |

    Dear Bob

    Thank you for your response. What is the minimum level of score required in all section of English Language Test in order to pursue career as a nurse in Australia?

    • marco April 19, 2014, 7:19 pm |

      You need a minimum of 7 and above in all subjects for IELTS, and you need a Grade of B and above for OET. I have gone through the whole process of getting resgistered with AHPRA, which is a nightmare really because of their inconsistent policies and inconsistent “assessment scheme”.

  • Bishal Shrestha April 17, 2014, 11:38 am |

    Hi Bob

    Just a quick information required. My wife is nurse from Nepal and we would like to move to Australia. Currently we are in United Kingdom. What do we have to do in order to get my wife onto nursing profession in Australia. She has done B.N in nursing and is equipped with more than six years of experience onto her profession. I asked you this question about good few months ago and it has gone unanswered so far and hope this time I will be able to get answer from you.

    • BobinOz April 17, 2014, 2:53 pm |

      It probably went unanswered because it is not “quick information”. It’s actually very complex and pretty much revolves around firstly having qualifications that are recognised he in Australia. That largely depends on which country you trained.

      It also depends on your English-language abilities and getting registered to work here as a nurse. It’s so complicated I haven’t even tried to understand it or keep up with any possible rule changes.

      That’s why I have included the links in the above article for people to investigate this for themselves.

      Good luck, Bob

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