Amidst nurse and midwife shortages, and underemployment of graduates, the Australian Nursing Federation has welcomed the tightening of the 457 visa system.
“There’s a predicted shortage of 109,000 nurses by 2025. In aged care alone, there is a current shortage of 20,000 nurses to cope with a rapidly ageing population,” said ANF federal secretary Lee Thomas.
Thomas said amendments to the legislation, which has passed through the federal parliament, will mean that nurses and midwives will not be exempt from labour market testing. This will protect local nursing and midwifery jobs.
“With nurses and midwives not exempt from labour market testing, employers will now have to demonstrate they have advertised and tried to employ local nurses and midwives before recruiting overseas workers on a 457 visa,” she said.
“The ANF has long been concerned that the use of 457 work visas to bring in workers from overseas could undermine training and job opportunities for local nursing and midwifery professionals.”
The ANF’s ongoing national campaign, “Stop passing the buck, Australia's nursing grads need jobs,” is calling on the federal government to find solutions to the growing shortage of nurses and midwives across the country.
Thomas said the ANF is urging prime minister Rudd to work with state and territory governments and health stakeholders to solve the nursing and midwifery crisis and ensure that the delivery of safe patient care was an election priority.Do you have an idea for a story?
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