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In Need of Nurses and Nurses in Need Bringing the Industry of Caring in New Zealand

13 Mar In Need of Nurses and Nurses in Need Bringing the Industry of Caring in New Zealand

The growth of Nursing in the Philippines as a profession is preceded by culture and the inherent natural characteristic of a Filipino to be caring. Such note-worthy characteristic has brought about a boom in the nursing industry since Y2000, as the 491 nursing schools in the Philippines produces roughly about 100,000 nurses every year (Lapena, 2013). As of writing, there are about 208,804 nurses who are ready to be employed, making the Philippines as one of the leaders in exporting nurses to meet the demands of other developed nations. This is readily supported by a study in 2005 by Lorenzo et. al., revealing that about 85% of the supply of nurses is employed abroad, which means only about 15% are absorbed for local employment.

The good thing about this piece of information is that nurses need not to worry much about where they would want to practice their profession. Backed up with a good balance between their theoretical knowledge and practical skills, then they would be able to settle just about anywhere in the world. Nursing is a profession that will always be in demand. As the population grow, so as the need for healthcare professionals like nurses. In fact, it is included in New Zealand’s list of skills that the country would need on a long term basis (as indicated in NZ’s Long Term Skill Shortage List). Having a skill included in this list is like knowing that you passed an entrance exam to the school that you really, really like, or seeing your name as being one of the board exam passers. It’s almost having a sure slot in the vast opportunity offered by New Zealand.

But of course, entrance exams or making it to the skills shortage list both entail a lot of hard work. The results are earned. For starters, those who wish to pursue international registration in New Zealand would have to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing, current registration with an overseas regulatory authority, 2 years post-registration nursing practice, a good command of the English language (may be measured by having an IELTS score of 7 in all bands) and an approved assessment from the Nursing Council of New Zealand according to its standards and criteria to undertake Competency Assessment Program (CAP). Needless to say, one of the biggest investments in becoming an internationally-recognized nurse is having a good education.

Why New Zealand?

Simulation healthcare class in UCOL, New Zealand
Simulation healthcare class in UCOL, New Zealand

Well, New Zealand offers unique opportunities for registered nurses to practice in a diverse range of nursing practice areas, in a variety of settings. Nurses have various roles in New Zealand such as nurse educator, nurse manager, nurse practitioner, nurse researcher, enrolled nurse; registered nurse for aged care, child and family health, community health, critical care and emergency, developmental disability, disability rehabilitation, medical practice, medical, mental health, pediatrics, perioperative, surgical, veterinary nurse, mothercraft nurse, and a lot more.

There are various pathways that New Zealand offers for an overseas registered nurse to work in the nursing profession. The Nursing Council of New Zealand has outlined their role and responsibilities in the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003 to protect its members and the entire healthcare industry of New Zealand.

Why complete Competency Assessment Programme (CAP) in New Zealand?

One pathway to being an internationally-recognized nurse in New Zealand is to complete the Competency Assessment Programme (CAP). New Zealand provide quality healthcare service to the community, that’s why health practitioners are required to be competent and fit to practice their professions in the New Zealand setting.

NCNZ stated their roles as:

Registered nurses use their knowledge and judgment to assess health needs, provide care, advice and support people to manage their health. They practice independently and in collaboration with other health professionals, perform general nursing functions, and delegate to and direct enrolled nurses, healthcare assistants and others. They provide comprehensive assessments to develop, implement, and evaluate an integrated plan of health care, and provide interventions that require substantial scientific and professional knowledge, skills and clinical decision making. They do this in a range of settings in partnership with individuals, families, whanau and communities.

These roles are quite different to the nurses in the Philippine setting. CAP is relatively a good option for overseas nurses who want to work in New Zealand. There are some schools (no more than 20) which offers a minimum of 6 weeks to a maximum of 3 months of training and lecture for nurses (there are limited slots available). The challenge here is being able to learn everything you can about the nursing industry in New Zealand in a very short span of time, while also adjusting to the New Zealand environment and, most importantly, finding the right employer where you can practice your profession.

Why still study a course in New Zealand?

Another pathway that you can take to become an internationally-recognized nurse in New Zealand is to study a nursing course for one year. Since nurses in New Zealand practice independently and in collaboration with other health professionals, studying a course will be a good pathway to obtain deeper knowledge in the healthcare industry in an international setting. It will also provide you with an extensive practical experience that will prepare you to the challenging but fulfilling profession of being a nurse. This will also be a good period to get a feel of what New Zealand has to offer, how it is to live in New Zealand, get to know a lot of people, be comfortable working with New Zealand healthcare institutions, and, most importantly, opportunity to prove yourself and meet your future employer. Working as a nurse in New Zealand usually requires an NZ experience so when you study for a year, your student visa will give you a full year of theoretical and practical knowledge and another year to gain expertise in the field of healthcare.

If you are a nurse who is considering a major career upgrade, an experience outside of your comfort zone, would like to add to your knowledge and skills, or someone looking for a stable place to practice your career and probably stay there for a while, then New Zealand is for you! Start your journey now by clicking here! Take that small step and we promise to be with you along the way.

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