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How to become a nurse in Australia: careers in nursing

How to become a nurse in Australia: careers in nursing
Nurses play an important role in Australia’s health care system, tending to the needs of patients in a wide range of health care settings. Nurses administer medical treatments, provide information and support to their patients, and work closely with doctors and other medical staff to devise effective care plans. There are a few ways to become a nurse in Australia, and a variety of specialisations to pursue.

Being a nurse: daily duties

A nurse’s daily tasks and responsibilities will vary depending n their work environment and their area of specialisation. In general, daily duties may include performing and supervising patient care tasks, administration of medication and treatments, use of medical equipment, taking observations and reporting on patients’ conditions and providing information to patients and their families regarding their medical conditions.


  • Performing patient care tasks
  • Administrating medicines and treatments
  • Using medical equipment
  • Taking observations
  • Providing information to patients and their families

Being a nurse: skills for success

Nurses need to have compassion and patience and a caring nature. The ability to communicate with people from a wide variety of cultural backgrounds is essential. An efficient approach to completing tasks and a detail-oriented focus to work is also a must. Nurses work long hours, in their feet, and are often required to work shifts including nights, weekends and public holidays.
  • Caring and patient demeanour
  • Perform tasks as instructed
  • Attention to detail
  • Problem solving skills
  • Good communication skills

Specialised roles within nursing

There are a variety of career paths to follow within the nursing profession, allowing you to tailor your studies and training to suit your interests and passions.
  • Emergency nurse
    Also known as trauma or clinical care nurses, they work in chaotic situations like emergency rooms, triage centres and trauma units. An emergency nurse needs to be able to take initiative in decision making, prioritise effectively and remain calm during a crisis.
  • Paediatric nurse
    These nurses work with infants, children and adolescents caring for patients with both chronic and acute problems.
  • Oncology nurse
    These nurses specialise in the care and assessment of patients undergoing cancer treatment. They provide education to patients and their families, monitor health outcomes and administer medications such as chemotherapy drugs.

Educational pathways for nurses

Opportunities for employment exist in the nursing profession at every level, from entry-level jobs requiring vocational training through to specialised study that is required for high-level roles.
  • Start your career
    Join the nursing profession in an entry-level role with these vocational courses.
  • Strengthen your skills
    Pursue a career specialisation and study for career advancement.
  • Build your resume
    Pursue high-level employment options by undertaking an extensive qualification or specialisation.
  • Industry requirements
    To work as a nurse in Australia, you will have to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Board after completing your qualification.
  • Finding Work
    Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your nursing career. Emphasise your personal strengths and achievements in your resume and target your cover letter to the job description listed.
  • Employment Prospects
    Australia is experiencing a shortage of nursing staff as a result of our aging population. There are professional opportunities available for nurses at all levels.

Resources for Nurses

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