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New registration model for Internationally Qualified Nurses in Australia

Australia’s new assessment system for International Nurses& Midwives

Understanding Australia’s new IQNM Assessment & Registration System with Global Migrations

Global Migrations have been helping many qualified nurses and midwives get their registration. But recently some new changes have been introduced in the registration process.

Since March 2020, Australian Government has introduced a new assessment system for Internationally Qualified Nurses and Midwives or IQNMs.

About two years ago the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) had brought in some changes in its registry assessment model for IQNMs. This saw the number of assessment criteria being cut from eight to just three. In addition to this, the NMBA has introduced an Outcomes Based Assessment (OBA).

What is Outcomes Based Assessment or OBA?

Outcomes Based Assessment or OBA, is the new assessment program that has replaced the old bridging program. The OBA will be applicable for overseas nurses and midwives who have qualifications that have been deemed as ‘relevant but not substantially equivalent’.

Since the bridging program stands terminated since March 2020, IQNMs are now required to successfully complete requirements for the OBA before they can apply for registration. Besides meeting the requirements for the OBA, it is mandatory for the nurses and midwives to meet the registration standards as outlined by the NMBA.

What are the steps involved in completing an Outcomes Based Assessment?

The new assessment model primarily involves three major steps with many sub-stages.Many of the components involved in these stages can be completed from the applicant’s resident country.

  • Step One

The process of assessment starts off with a self-check, in which the qualifications of the applicant will be assessed. It is mandatory for an IQNM applicant to go through this self-check process. After this, the applicant will go through a two-part Orientation program.

If a nurseor a midwifeis assessed to hold a qualification that is deemed as ‘substantially equivalent’ as per the Australian standards, then they cango ahead with their IQNM registration.

But if the qualification is deemed ‘relevant but not substantially equivalent’, then the IQNM applicant has to complete the Outcomes Based Assessment.

  • Step Two

The OBA has two phases. The first phase is a Multiple Choice Question (MCQ)exam, which is the cognitive component of the assessment.The second phase involves theObjective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE); this is the behavioural component of the assessment. It is mandatory to complete the cognitive component before moving to the behavioural component of the OBA.

The cognitive assessment which involves multiple choice questions is computer based. This exam can be taken from the applicant’s resident country.

  • Step Three

The behavioural assessment which involves the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) is used to assess the behavioural skills of an IQNM. This exam assesses the applicant IQNM’s knowledge, skills and competence as per the standards of a graduate level Australian nurse or midwife. The OSCE is managed by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).This exam is conducted at an institute or a facility based in Australia.

Reduced Fee Structure

As per theold system IQNMscould qualify for registration only after completing a bridging program. The standard fees for those bridging programs used to beanywhere between $15,000 to $18,000.

But under the new system the fees has been cut down,thus making it more economical for aspiring IQNM applicants.

Here’s a look at the new registration fee structure as per the NMBA:

  • Self-check process will be free. If the applicant is qualified to go ahead with the registration then they will be required to pay an assessment fee of AUD $640.
  • The fee structure for the MCQ exam will be different for nurses and midwives.
  • For Nurses, the National Council of Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLX-RN) delivered by Pearson VUE test centres will cost a total of USD $350(USD $200 forregistration and USD $150 for international scheduling).
  • For Midwives, the MCQ will be delivered through Aspeq test centres costing NZD$165.An additional overseas venue fee will also be charged.
  • The fee for OSCE will be USD $4,000.

If you want to get a better idea about the OBA and the new fee structure please do get in touch with Global Migrations. Our team will be happy to assist you with the registration process.

You can contact our offices in Melbourne at +61 433 840 304 or visit us at- www.globalmigrations.com.au