Overseas nurses have been able to register in New Zealand since 2004 when they first joined an International Registered Nurses (IRN) program. Overseas nurse registration requires a minimum of 14 months’ clinical experience, must have advanced standing in clinical skills and result in an active personal effect full license (PFP). Overseas nurses are required to register with the New Zealand immigration authorities before they can practice in New Zealand. Overseas registration serves as a credential to substantiate the current main reason for their visit and family members along with their academic background. There are different types of overseas registrations depending on the regulations of the country from which a nurse is seeking immigration clearance.
Requirements for Joinning the New Zealand Register:
Requirements for Joinning the New Zealand Register
To become a registered nurse in New Zealand you must:
- Be of good character and fitness to practice nursing.
- Be in possession of a current, valid registration.
- Have completed at least 3 years of post-graduate education or training as a registered nurse (RNZN).
- Pass NAREM (National Assessment and Recognition Examination) which is taken by all nurses wishing to join the New Zealand Register.
- Show evidence that you have accepted employment with a hospital or institution approved by NZQA before applying for registration.
- You must have your qualifications recognized by the New Zealand Nursing Council (Nursing Council) and have completed the relevant coursework and clinical training requirements.
- You must be registered as a Registered Nurse (RN) or Registered Midwife (RM) in your home country and have completed the same education and training requirements as required for other international students entering New Zealand’s nursing programs through the government-funded Student Nurse Scheme (SNS).
Education Standards for Registered Nurses:
The education and training of registered nurses in New Zealand is similar to that required for entry level positions in other countries.
The educational requirements for registration with the Nursing Council are:
- 12 months full-time per-registration training. The training must include a minimum of 1,000 hours of supervised clinical practice at an approved Registered Nurse (RN) work unit or equivalent.
- Three years of post-registration experience as an RN in New Zealand. This experience can be gained in various roles such as: staff nurse, ward nurse, specialist nurse, clinical lead, nursing director or manager.
- Registration with the Nursing Council of New Zealand (NZNC
Structure and Content of the Programme
The New Zealand Certificate in Overseas Nurse Registration is a two-year course that provides students with the skills and knowledge required to register as a nurse in their chosen country. The programme is flexible, allowing you to choose which modules you would like to study. You can also take your time studying, as there are no deadlines or exams.
The programme includes:
- Study skills
- Critical thinking skills
- Understanding human behavior and motivation
- Understanding health care systems and policies
- Communicating effectively in English, French or Spanish (or any other language)
Evidence of competence to practice as a registered nurse.
- A diploma in nursing, as specified in section 2 of the Nursing Council Act 1992, or an equivalent qualification approved by the Nursing Council; and
- Evidence that the applicant has completed a 1-year nursing education program at a New Zealand tertiary education institution which meets the standards for accreditation of New Zealand higher education institutions by the Ministry of Education.
The applicant may demonstrate evidence of competence in one or more areas listed below:
Nursing skills and knowledge related to caring for patients and clients (for example, assessment, assessment planning, care planning, communication skills).
The Application Process
The application process for nurse registration in New Zealand is straightforward. You will need to provide your:
- Personal details (name, date of birth, address, phone number)
- Medical records from the country where you trained.
- Application form signed by your employer and the medical officer of health.
- Payment of NZ$50 fee by cash or bank deposit.
- A photocopy of passport with a validity period at least one month beyond the expiration date of your visa (if applicable
- A clinical examination will be conducted by NZNE or an approved delegate to confirm that applicants meet all eligibility requirements for registration as a registered nurse. The clinical examination will also include practical skills assessments such as communication skills, leadership abilities and patient care skills, which are required by law for registration as a registered nurse in New Zealand (this may lead to further training). Upon successful completion of the clinical exam, applicants will receive an invitation letter from NZNE to register with them if they wish to do so after completing their training programme overseas
The following documents are required for all overseas applicants:
- Proof of identity and address
- Letter from employer/sponsor
- Original passport, visa or travel document
- Police clearance certificate (if applicable)
- CV/resume/curriculum vitae (if applicable)
- Academic transcripts (where relevant)
- Certified copies of degrees/diplomas (where relevant)
- Medical registration certificate for overseas applicants not currently registered with the Nursing Council of New Zealand and who have met the minimum basic entry requirements
The requirements to register as an overseas nurse are clear, but they may involve some work on your part.
If you have questions about the application process or if you need assistance completing your application, please contact us at educationin.eu