To work with us, enrolled nurses, registered nurses and midwives need to gain and maintain registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA). The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) manages the registration and renewal process for both nurses and midwives on behalf of the NMBA.

Assistants in nursing, undergraduate students in nursing and undergraduate students in midwifery will have their requirements to work outlined in their role description.

If you’re a nurse practitioner or an endorsed midwife you can apply for an endorsement on your registration in those areas.

Your responsibilities

If you’re practicing as a nurse or midwife, it is your responsibility to make sure your registration is current and you’re compliant with the NMBA Registration Standards. This includes during periods of extended leave, including:

  • leave with or without pay
  • secondments
  • acting or higher duties arrangements
  • when taking extended breaks between casual engagements.

If the status of your registration changes, you need to let your line manager know straight away. There are a variety of causes for registration changes, which can be found on the NMBA website.

Internationally qualified nurses and midwives

If you’re an internationally qualified nurse or midwife (IQNM) wanting to work in Australia, you’ll need to gain and maintain registration with, and meet requirements of, the NMBA.

All IQNM applicants wishing to seek registration in Australia as an enrolled nurse (EN), registered nurse (RN) or midwife must refer and complete all requirements as detailed in the outcomes-based assessment pathway.

It is important that you have a good understanding of what it is like to work within the Australian healthcare system as it can be quite different to healthcare systems in other countries. The NMBA has developed an orientation program to introduce IQNMs to a range of concepts relating to the Australian healthcare context.

Re-entry to practice

If it has been a while since you have practised as an enrolled nurse, registered nurse or midwife, or you are no longer registered with AHPRA but are interested in practising again, there are some steps that you will have to take, dependent on your specific circumstances. You may also be required to undertake a period of supervised practice or complete an NMBA-approved re-entry to practice program. More information can be found on the NMBA Fact Sheet: Re-entry to practice.

Refresher program

Following an audit by AHPRA or renewal of your registration, if the NMBA determines that you need to undertake a specific number of hours of supervised practice and/or other learning requirements, this can be achieved in Queensland by participating in a Refresher Program for nurses and/or midwives. These are suitable for nurses or midwives who have been away from the workforce for an extended period of time (e.g. in the last five years), but are still registered with AHPRA.

To access a refresher program, you will need to individually contact Queensland public and private hospitals or health services through their nursing recruitment teams to make enquiries. You may be required to source your own Professional Indemnity insurance to participate.

Re-entry program

If the NMBA determines that you need to complete an NMBA-approved program of study before being eligible for general registration, there are several programs available. Find out about the re-entry programs for applicants.

Renewal of registration

Registration renewal through AHPRA is due every year in May.

Your employer may seek evidence of your registration. They may request that you provide them with a copy of your registration, or they may look you up on the AHPRA Register of Practitioners.

Registration Standards

To become registered and maintain registration, there are Registration Standards you will need to meet.

Additional Registration Standards apply if you are a nurse practitioner or a midwife with endorsement for scheduled medicines.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you meeet the Registration Standards. One of these relates to Continuing Professional Development.

Continuing Professional Development

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is a condition of registration. Nurses and midwives must complete a minimum number of CPD hours directly relevant to their context of practice. Read more about CPD including what activities can count towards CPD and how to record it.

Last updated: November 2023