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A Career in Nursing/Midwifery
 
       
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Nursing and Midwifery in South Australia is a highly rewarding career and it certainly “takes you places”! It offers an enormous variety of settings for employment and an extensive choice of areas for specialisation and advancement. For example, it is possible to be employed in a hospital and to choose from specialties such as cardiology, intensive care, emergency, general nursing or work in a community based setting.

Nurses and midwives require clinical, communication, negotiation, management and decision-making skills and are critical to the healthcare team and work closely with all members of the team such as doctors and allied health professionals.

The Nursing and Midwifery Board Australia (NMBA) recognises the following registrations and enrolments:

  • Registered Nurse (RN);
  • Registered Midwife (RM); and
  • Enrolled Nurse (EN).

Career pathways within the profession have been designed to allow individuals to follow their own field of interest, gain promotion and improve their earning capacity. There are four parallel streams available: clinical practice, management or administration, education and research, although it is possible to move in and out of each area. In all streams there are differing levels of practice, which may be carried out in the public or private sectors.

South Australian qualifications for a registered nurse, registered midwife and enrolled nurse are recognised nationally and in some overseas countries for employment purposes.

The Bachelor of Nursing and Midwifery programs, Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 Nursing) and Graduate Diploma in Mental Health Nursing or Graduate Diploma in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing include both theory and clinical practice components. Clinical practice is gained in clinical laboratories, hospitals, community settings and other health industry locations.

Working Conditions and Pay Rates

The relevant Industrial Awards determine the working conditions and pay rates. Within the public sector, conditions of employment are negotiated through an Enterprise Bargaining Agreement the most current being the Nurses/Midwives (South Australian Public Sector) Enterprise Bargaining Agreement 2010 .

Within the private sector, most employers negotiate organisation Enterprise Bargaining Agreements with their employees.

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How to Become a Registered Nurse

To become a registered nurse it is necessary to complete a Bachelor of Nursing. The program is usually studied full time over three years (or the equivalent part time). The Bachelor of Nursing can be studied either as a first degree or post registration/professional entry.

The post registration/professional entry degree program is studied full time over 18 months (or the equivalent part time). To be eligible for entry to the post registration/professional entry degree program applicants must be a registered midwife and hold a current practising certificate.

Upon successful completion of the Bachelor of Nursing the graduate will have reached the competency levels set by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Council (ANMC) and will be eligible to apply to the Nursing and Midwifery Board Australia (NMBA) for entry onto the Register. Following registration the nurse has the opportunity to gain employment as a Registered Nurse or choose to commence a transition to professional practice program (Graduate Nurse Program).

How to Become a Registered Midwife

To become a registered midwife it is necessary to complete a Bachelor of Midwifery. The Bachelor of Midwifery can be studied either as a first degree or post registration/professional entry.

The first degree program is studied full time over three years (or the equivalent part time). The post registration/professional entry degree program is studied full time over 18 months (or the equivalent part time). To be eligible for entry to the post registration/professional entry degree program applicants must be a Registered Nurse and hold a current practising certificate.

Upon successful completion of the midwifery degree, the graduate will be eligible to apply to the Nursing and Midwifery Board of South Australia (NMBA) for entry onto the Register. Following registration the midwife has the opportunity to gain employment as a Registered Midwife or choose to commence a transition to professional practice program (Graduate Midwife Program).

How to Become an Enrolled Nurse

Enrolled nurses generally work under the direction and supervision of registered nurses and midwives and provide nursing care in many settings.

To become an enrolled nurse it is necessary to complete a Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 Nursing) provided by colleges of TAFE SA as well as other Registered Training Organisations (RTOs). The program is usually studied full time over 18 months (or the equivalent part time).

Upon successful completion of the Diploma of Nursing (Pre-Enrolment) graduates will have reached the competency levels set by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Council (ANMC) and will be eligible to apply to the Nursing and Midwifery Board Australia (NMBA) for entry onto the Roll.

There are a number of programs which have been developed for students from the rural and remote sector to assist in obtaining the Diploma of Nursing (Pre-Enrolment). These include:

  • The South Australia Rural and Remote Nursing Cadetship Program offers the opportunity for rural and remote healthcare units to locally employ a Nursing Cadet for a period of 18 months. During the 18 month period the Nursing Cadet will undertake a TAFE SA Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 Nursing) and be employed by the local health unit for 15 hours per week.
  • VET in Schools – Pathway to Nursing for Rural and Remote Secondary School Students. Students in Year 11 and 12 are able to complete the Community Services Training Package – Certificate III in Community Services (Aged Care) as part of their SACE certificate which on completion will enable students to apply for the Diploma of Nursing (Pre-Enrolment).

Further studies may be undertaken by enrolled nurses to broaden their knowledge in an area of particular interest. These are conducted by some RTOs and hospitals. There are some formal arrangements for credit transfer between TAFE SA and universities that offer the Bachelor of Nursing program.

Enrolled Nurses who wish to become registered nurses or midwives may do so by completing the Pre-Registration Undergraduate Degree and may be given credit for what is identified as prior learning. This may reduce the length of the Bachelor of Nursing and Midwifery programs.

Course Information

Diploma in Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 Nursing) is offered by various providers. For further information regarding entry requirements:

Note: You will need to check entry details for the TAFE SA or RTO of your choice as there may be slight variation in relation to entry requirements.

Application Information

Applications for Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 Nursing) are processed through the South Australian Tertiary Admissions Centre (SATAC) for enrolment to TAFE SA campuses, or the Enrolled Nurse Coordinator at the Hospital or RTO who is accredited to conduct the program.

Note: You will need to check the relevant details for TAFE SA or the training provider of your choice as there may be slight variation in relation to application requirements.

 

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