Department of Health

Support for new nurse practitioners

Find out who is eligible for support and how to apply.

The Department of Health is offering scholarships and support to train and upskill the next generation of nurses and midwives.

This initiative also provides additional funding for public health services to support the development of the nurse practitioner role and increase the number of nurse practitioners in the workforce.

Offered over 2023 and 2024, this program provides:

  • 100 nurse practitioner candidate support packages (50 each year)
  • 100 scholarships for nurse practitioner candidates (50 each year).

In addition, in 2023-24 only, salary support for 50 new nurse practitioner roles will be offered.


Funding is available for Victorian public health services to support the development of nurse practitioners through 3 streams as follows:

  1. Nurse practitioner candidate support packages – public health services will receive $30,000 per candidate to encourage the development of the nurse practitioner role within the organisation and contribute to costs such as:
    • providing the nurse practitioner/candidate a minimum of 300 paid hours of supernumerary practice*
    • clinical supervision and professional support
    • training and development consistent with the model of care and the candidate’s scope of practice
    • recruitment and appointment of candidates, which cannot exceed 5% of candidates support if utilised.
  2. Scholarship support for nurse practitioner candidates – $12,000 per candidate to support education costs associated with completing the required master level qualification.
  3. Salary support (2023-24 only) – for 50 new nurse practitioner roles, health services will receive up to 25% of the nurse practitioner salary for 1 year. This will help embed the nurse practitioner role into the model of care within the organisation.

Public health services are responsible for managing the funding associated with the nurse practitioner candidate support package, including the scholarship to nurse practitioner candidates.

* This is a course requirement and individual universities have different minimum hours which range from 300 to 500 hours.

Eligibility criteria

Health service

All Victorian public health services are eligible to apply for funding for nurse practitioner candidates. This includes public health service settings that are part of metropolitan or rural public health services, such as aged care services, mental health services, community health services and community hospitals.

Independent public residential aged care services are also eligible.

However, public health services must be able to provide appropriate clinical supervision, professional support and specific training and development associated with the candidate’s scope of practice.

Note: Independent/stand-alone community health services, which are not part of a public health service, are ineligible.


To be eligible you must:

  • be a registered nurse holding a current registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
  • be an Australian citizen, a New Zealand citizen (or dual citizenship holders of either Australia or New Zealand), an Australian permanent resident or an Australian permanent humanitarian visa holder
  • be employed in an eligible Victorian public health service during the period of the candidate support package
  • enrol in semester 2, 2023 or semester 1, 2024 in a Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) approved program of study that leads to a qualification enabling nurse practitioner endorsement
  • not already hold a nurse practitioner endorsement.

You must also:

  • agree to complete the course and work as a nurse practitioner in the Victorian public health sector for 2 years at a minimum of 0.8 EFT, or pro-rata equivalent
  • only use the scholarship funds for postgraduate study which leads to nurse practitioner endorsement.

Students that study part-time are eligible to receive the $12,000 scholarship.

Funding will be provided for eligible new students commencing their studies in semester 2, 2023 and semester 1, 2024. Any current or prior enrolments, or deferral of enrolments prior to semester 2, 2023, will not be funded.


If you are eligible, you must enrol in a course that:

  • is with a university or an accredited higher education provider. Courses provided by Victorian education providers will be prioritised for scholarships
  • leads to a qualification (Master’s program or other appropriate units/modules at master level) that enables endorsement as a nurse practitioner in Australia
  • includes clinical nursing practice related to the area of study.

How to apply

Applications for this funding will be co-ordinated by public health services. Applications have now closed. The department will notify health services of the outcome of their application early 2024.

Health services are responsible for the:

  • managing information regarding scholarships, including notifying recipients
  • application processes (including internal applications for scholarships and external applications to the Department of Health)
  • selection of scholarship recipients
  • identifying new nurse practitioner roles for salary support
  • disbursement of funds
  • monitoring outcomes of the scholarship program and salary support.

To find out more, contact the Nursing and Midwifery Education Team at your organisation.

More information for applicants

If you are successful in gaining a scholarship, you are responsible for enrolling in and completing the qualification by the due date and for any study costs beyond the value of the scholarship.

If you need to defer or withdraw from your studies, you must notify the employer within 1 week of the change in study arrangements.

If you plan to recommence study in the same year, you do not need to return the funds.

If you do not return to study in the same year, the funds will be recalled.

The department is not required to withhold tax (PAYG) from grants paid. You should be aware:

The department strongly recommends that recipients seek independent tax advice for their scholarship payment.

Reviewed 21 February 2024


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Nursing and Midwifery Workforce

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