NSWNA assists stranded students

Frustrated graduates turn to NSWNA to get their registrations through.

Another bureaucratic oversight by universities has delayed the registration of approximately 20 graduating nursing students.

According to the Nurses and Midwives Board (NMB), it had no choice but to delay the students’ registration based on an unapproved bridging course provided by the universities some two years prior. The course gained the EENs advanced standing towards their degrees.

In a similar situation reported in The Lamp last year, 50 nursing graduates who had successfully completed degrees were refused registration for failing to meet the English language requirements for NMB registration.

It was this situation that alerted the NMB to potential deficiencies in the university credit system, forcing it to demand full transcripts of degrees from students – which in-turn revealed the current unapproved bridging course.

As most of the graduates had resigned their previous positions as EENs, and were about to commence new jobs dependant on their registration, they were caught in a frustrating ‘Catch-22’ situation.

Because the graduates were NSWNA members, they were able to get assistance resolving the problem.

Henry Dizon, now an elated RN, is a former EEN who completed his degree at the University of Western Sydney last year.

Henry was due to start work in the mental health unit at Westmead Hospital as an RN but when he turned up to the NMB with his transcripts, paperwork and documents to finalise his registration he was told he wouldn’t qualify.

‘I was completely shocked,’ he told The Lamp. ‘When they told me it involved the bridging course from two years earlier I became extremely frustrated.

‘They said there was nothing they could do about it at the time. After speaking to others in the same boat we decided to ring the NSW Nurses’ Association.

‘We didn’t know where we stood and no one knew what to do. The NSWNA officer was wonderful. She took it on and from that day kept us fully informed.

‘The NSWNA asked our new employers to keep us on until they had resolved the issue – which was really lucky for some who had quit their previous EEN positions but could not yet start as RNs.

‘It all came together in the nick of time. When I got the SMS text from the NSWNA saying it was all fixed, I straight away looked up the online registry and there I was! I can’t tell you how good that felt,’ said Henry.