Department of Health

Returning to nursing or midwifery

Key messages

  • A registration in nursing and/or midwifery is a valuable resource that is worth keeping.
  • Getting back on the nursing and midwifery register is not an automatic entitlement.
  • The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) can advise you about how to regain your nursing and/or midwifery registration.
  • The NMBA has a list of approved programs of study and course providers which you may use to assist you to regain your nursing or midwifery registration.
  • If you still have your registration but have had a break from nursing or midwifery, consider enrolling in a refresher program.

Returning to practice

Clinical care, knowledge and skills are changing rapidly along with nursing and midwifery standards of practice and you need much more than the ‘basics of care’ to be able to work safely and effectively. So when you’re exploring a return to nursing or midwifery practice, remember that getting back on the register is not an automatic entitlement.

To find out more about returning to nursing or midwifery practice (or if you are thinking of having a break from nursing or midwifery), please read our Getting back into nursing or midwifery factsheet first.

Nurses and midwives with current registration

You can check the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency website to see if you are still registered as a nurse and/or midwife – search the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency – Registers of Practitioners.

If you are currently a registered nurse or midwife but have had a break from nursing practice, consider a refresher program to update your knowledge and clinical skills. Some Victorian public health services offer nursing or midwifery refresher programs, allowing you to build your confidence and skills within a short period of time.

To find out about nursing or midwifery refresher programs, speak with your prospective employer and read our factsheet.

Where can I find a refresher program in Victoria?

To increase opportunities for RNs, RMs and ENs to re-enter the workforce or re-skill in a particular clinical specialty, funding has been made available for certain Victorian public health services through the Governments $50 million Nursing and Midwifery Workforce Development Fund to design, implement and evaluate nursing and midwifery refresher programs that build their local workforce. 

Services who will be providing refresher programs in 2019-20

Services who will be providing refresher programs in 2020-21

Health Service Region
Albury Wodonga Health  Rural/regional
Barwon Health  Rural/regional
Bass Coast Health  Rural/regional
Benalla Health  Rural/regional
Bendigo Health Rural/regional
Central Gippsland Health Rural/regional
Eastern Health  Metropolitan
Echuca Regional Health  Rural/regional
Goulburn Valley Health (Links with NCN) Rural/regional
Latrobe Regional Hospital  Rural/regional
Mansfield District Hospital  Rural/regional
Numurkah District Health Service (NCN) (Links with GVH)  Rural/regional
Northern Health  Metropolitan
Royal Women's Hospital Metropolitan
St Vincent's Hospital Melbourne Metropolitan
Stawell Regional Health   Rural/regional
Tallangatta Health Service Rural/regional
West Gippsland Healthcare Group   Rural/regional
Western District Health Rural/regional
Western Health Metropolitan
Yarrawonga Health  Rural/regional

A list of hospitals and health services in Victoria is available here.

Nurses and midwives with lapsed registration

If you are a former registered nurse, enrolled nurse or midwife, contact the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) to find out how to regain your registration or endorsement.

The NMBA may advise you to complete a re-entry course. The NMBA's website has a list of approved programs of study which can assist in gaining registration, endorsement and notation of applicants for registration as an enrolled nurse (EN), registered nurse (RN) and registered midwife (RM). 

Contact course providers directly to find out if and when places are available.

Reviewed 19 November 2021


Contact details

Nursing and Midwifery Workforce

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