Working in aged care
Nursing in aged care - education and training opportunities
Aged Care environments - residential and in community - offer rich, challenging and varied opportunities for nurses to apply their knowledge and skills while also extending their professional development.
This page provides information on education, training and professional development opportunities and related financial support initiatives for nurses working in an eligible aged care service. The page also provides links to information for nurses or others seeking to work as a nurse in the growing and varied aged care sector.
An eligible aged care service is:
- a Commonwealth funded residential aged care service
- a service providing Commonwealth funded community care or flexible care service including Community Aged Care Packages, Extended Aged Care at Home and Extended Aged Care at Home Dementia packages or Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flexible care services.
- Aged care nursing scholarships, including for nursing re-entry and Nurse Practitioners
- Nursing and Allied Health Scholarship and Support Scheme (NAHSSS)
- the Aged Care Education and Training Incentive scheme
- Enrolled nurse training places
- Graduate nurses and clinical training placements
- Nurse Practitioners
Aged care nursing scholarshipsFor information on aged care nursing scholarships rounds go to the scholarships pages at:
- Undergraduate studies — Scholarships are available to individuals who can demonstrate a commitment to aged care, for courses leading to a qualification to practice as a registered nurse. Financial assistance is available of up to $10,000 per year to a maximum of $30,000 to assist in meeting costs incurred while studying.
- Post-graduate qualifications — Scholarships are available for registered nurses working in the aged care sector and undertaking postgraduate certificates, diplomas, masters or honours level study. These scholarships provide financial assistance of up to $15,000 a year to a maximum of $30,000 to assist in meeting costs incurred while studying.
- Other scholarships for continuing education for enrolled nurses or registered nurses in the aged care sector undertaking short courses, workshops and conference attendance. Nurse re-entry courses are also covered
- Up to $5,000 per courses or workshop.
- Up to $3,000 for conference attendance.
- Up to $6,000 covering a two year period for nurses undertaking re-entry courses (for nurses that have been out of the workforce seeking to re-enter the nursing sector).Top of page
- Aged Care Nursing Scholarships: Nurse Practitioner — This scholarship supports registered nurses who work within the aged care sector to undertake nurse practitioner studies at an Australian tertiary institute. The scheme provides financial assistance in the form of a scholarship worth up to a total of $15 000 per year for two years full time study ($30 000 in total), or $7500 per year for up to four years part time study.
Nursing and Allied Health Scholarship and Support Scheme (NAHSSS)All nurses and allied health professionals are invited to apply for scholarships. There are particular streams applicable to:
- Nurse practitioners
- Nurses working in Indigenous communities;
- Clinical placements for undergraduate nursing students in Indigenous communities
- Clinical placements for undergraduate / entry level allied health students; and
- Psychology graduates seeking to qualify as clinical psychologists.
- For more information, visit the RCNA website at http://www.rcna.org.au or free-call 1800 117 262.
Aged Care Education and Training Incentive programAged Care Education and Training Incentive program provides payments to eligible aged care workers who undertake further studies to enhance their career. The program can assist personal care workers seeking to move into nursing as well as enrolled nurses or registered nurses.Top of page
- For enrolled nurses: Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 nursing) and Certificate IV in Nursing (Enrolled/Division 2 nursing)
- For registered nurses: Undergraduate Bachelor of Nursing.
Enrolled nurse training placesFinancial support is provided to aged care providers for enrolled nurses training places. Approved Providers identify suitable students through their individual workforce planning. The Approved Provider nominates these students and requests the relevant number of training places required by completing an Approved Provider Training Endorsement form.
Graduate nurses and clinical training placementsFunding of more than $7.5 million has been provided through the Department, for the period June 2011 to June 2014, to fourteen organisations to assist aged care providers improve the quality of the clinical placement experience for student nurses, and further develop career pathways for graduate nurses in aged care.
The 1300 clinical placements involved will be accessed by students in each year of the placements program through arrangements made directly between their individual educational providers and the participating aged care providers.
Access to the funded graduate placements is dependent upon the specific graduate programs run by the funded aged care providers. The timing of intakes and selection criteria vary.
The placement projects will be evaluated together with the Teaching and Research Aged Care Services (TRACS) initiative.
Related LinksFor information on aged care opportunities and training relevant to nursing in the growing aged care sector go to:
- Vocational Education and Training in Australia — for information on Training Packages, Qualifications, Courses, Units of Competency and Registered Training Organisations (RTOs).
- Community Services & Health Industry Skills Council — for information on skills and workforce development across Australia for community services and health. Information is available on the Community Services Training Package applying in aged care
- Royal College of Nursing Australia
- The College of Nursing
- Aged and Community Services Australia Incorporated — the national peak body representing over 1100 church, charitable and community-based organisations, providing accommodation and care services to older Australians, people with a disability and their carers.
- The Aged Care Association Australia — the professional, national industry association for providers of quality residential and community aged care services.
- Clinicians page for clinicians working in aged care
- Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency
- Medicare - Health professionals page
- MBS arrangements for eligible Nurse Practitioners
For information on nurse re-entry, go to: http://www.nursingmidwiferyboard.gov.au/Accreditation.aspx