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Enrolled nurse

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Summary of occupation

Enrolled nurses assist in the provision of nursing care under the supervision of a registered nurse. They may work in one of the State's many hospitals, in aged-care facilities or other health-care settings. They assist with health assessments, measure and record the temperature, pulse or blood pressure of patients, administer medications, and attend to patients' comfort or hygiene needs.

Enrolled nurses may also assist in emergency situations and rehabilitation exercises, and may provide patients with health education.

ANZSCO description: Provides nursing care to patients in a variety of health, aged care, welfare and community settings under the supervision of Registered Nurses. Registration or licensing is required.
Alternative names: Mothercraft Nurse, Nursing Assistant (NZ), Practice Nurse
Specialisations: Medical Assistant (Defence)
Job prospects: Average
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Knowledge, skills and attributes

Enrolled Nurses need:

  • excellent communication and listening skills
  • good organisation and time management skills
  • decision-making and problem-solving skills
  • compassion and the ability to empathise with patients
  • an interest in patient health.
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Working conditions

Enrolled nurses may work in general medical practices, community health practices, hospitals, aged-care facilities or after-hour clinics. They are expected to adhere to the strict rules and regulations necessary to ensure that these environments are kept safe and sterile. Enrolled nurses may be exposed to bodily fluids and other unsanitary or hazardous materials, so must wear any necessary safety clothing. Depending on the organisation for which they work, they may be required to work long shifts, odd hours and weekends.

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Salary details

On average, enrolled nurses can expect to earn between $1 048 and $1 118 per week ($54 486 and $58 118 per year), depending on the organisation they work for, and their level of experience. As an enrolled nurse develops their skills, their earning potential will generally increase.

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Tools and technologies

As they work in a medical environment, enrolled nurses need to be familiar with medical and surgical instruments such as thermometers, stethoscopes and otoscopes for examining ears, as well as specialist machines such as electrocardiographs (ECGs) and other monitoring equipment. They also need to know how to correctly apply dressings to wounds and plaster to make casts, and how to administer immunisations and vaccines using syringes. They usually also need to be familiar with computers for the entry of patient data into electronic record keeping systems.

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Education and training/entrance requirements

To become an enrolled nurse, you need to complete a VET qualification in nursing.

​The Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled – Division 2 Nursing) is offered at TAFE Colleges and other registered training organisations throughout Western Australia (WA).

To work as an enrolled nurse in WA, you must obtain professional registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. 

You also need to obtain a Working with Children Check issued by the Working with Children Screening Unit of the Department of Community Services.

Related courses

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Apprenticeships and traineeships

As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer. You spend most of your time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider of your choice. They will assess your skills and when you are competent in all areas, you will be awarded a nationally recognised qualification.

If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. You generally start your school based apprenticeship by attending school three days a week, spending one day at a registered training organisation and one day at work. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you get a full-time apprenticeship you can apply to leave school before reaching the school leaving age.

If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.

Related apprenticeships

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Recognition of prior learning

If you think you already have some of the skills or competencies, obtained either through non-formal or informal learning, you may be able to gain credit through recognition of prior learning.

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