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Frequently Asked Nursing Questions..  
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Starting Out:
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Q1. How much Nursing experience do I need?
Facility managers generally require nurses to have had a Minimum of 2 years experience in their qualification. When you go out on contract, it is expected that you are to hit the ground running, with minimal support on the floor compared to what you might be used to. Once you have had 2 years of experience in your qualification, we can certainly look at claiming you as a CQ Nurse!
Q2. Will it cost anything to join your agency?
A. No, it is free of charge to join
Q3. What qualifications do I need?
A. You need to be an Endorsed Enrolled Nurse or a Registered Nurse.
Q4. What if I specialize in a particular field, or have Post Grad Qualifications - is there contract work for me?
A. We often get requests for specialist nurses from different facilities that we cannot fill, as we just don't have enough nurses with these skill sets on our books.  We often have specialist positions available in Operating Theatres, Geriatrics, Remote Areas, Mental Health, Child Health and Maternity Services.  Therefore, you would be highly valued by the facilities that utilise CQ Nurse.  AND if you hold post graduate qualifications in these specialties, you will be paid a higher increment in lieu of a qualification allowance*. (*conditions apply and will be determined on a case by case basis)
Q5. What professional registration do I need?
A. AHPRA (Australian Health Practioner Regulation Agency) Registration.
Q6. Do I need insurance?
A. CQ Nurse and the facilities to whom we contract have the necessary worker's compensation insurance.  However if you envisage doing agency work in the long term, it may be a valuable option to seek income protection insurance.  We recommend that you seek independent financial and legal advice in this regard.
Q7. I am a Midwife, do I need my own indemnity insurance?
A. CQ Nurse is one of only a handful of agencies that provide Professional Indemnity Insurance for Midwives.  This means that you can register with us, and start work without the worry of finding your own professional indemnity insurance - we have it all covered.  It allows you just to jump in, start earning Agency dollars - and experience what working for CQ Nurse is all about.
Q8. Do I need a visa or work permit to work as a nurse in Australia?
A. No, not if you are travelling on an Australian or New Zealand passport. You will require a visa or work permit if you are travelling on any other passport.  We are no longer able to sponsor nurses on 457 visas.  For those nurses keen to work in regional and rural areas, there are other options available to you outside a 457 visa - we can direct you to a Migration Agent for clarification on what is best for you.
Q9. How much do I earn? How are nurses graded in Australia?
A. The pay rates vary from state to state and from facility to facility. Our Recruitment Consultant will be able to provide you with further information that will be relevant to your situation.  Pay rates are based on nursing experience and the position that you are contracted to.  Increments are not negotiated, but we need proof of experience/hours worked in order to pay incremental levels as advised by yourself - this is easily achieved through Statements of Service provided by your previous employers.
Q10. Can I bring my pet?
A. Some health facilities can provide accommodation that is pet friendly. If you have a pet that likes to travel with you then let us know and we will advise you if your request can be accommodated.
Q11. Can I bring my spouse/children?
A. Most accommodation provided by the facilities would suit single adults, however some facilities are able to provide suitable accommodation for a couple. You may be required to pay for your partners' accommodation. Some of our nurses have opted to take up private accommodation to facilitate their family.
Q12. Do I get free travel, accommodation and meals wherever I go?
A. All travel, accommodation and meals are negotiated separately with the facility for each placement. We try and get the best possible deal for our nurses. Your requirements are best discussed at the time of negotiating your contract with us.
Q13. What do I need to present to CQ Nurse to join the Agency?
To begin the registration process with CQ Nurse, all we will require initially is:

1. An up to date CV - Your CV should contain your employment history and details of skills and responsibilities in each role.

2. Referee's x 2 - Your CV must contain details of TWO clinical referees who must be line managers or clinical staff members who are in a more senior position than you are and who have worked directly with you. It is also important that one is from your most current employment and the second is from the past last two years in order for them to comment on your current clinical skill base. We will not contact them immediately, but we like them to be listed in your CV so that we can discuss these with you.

There are some other documents you might like to start getting together, as these will be needed once you are through the registration process;

  • Nursing Registration documents and post Graduate Certificates (RN's and EEN's)
  • 100 points of identification, one of which must be:
  • Passport; 70 points each, or
  • Birth Certificate 70 points each, plus
Remaining ID may include:
  • Drivers Licence: 40 points
  • Registration; 30 points
  • Bankcard/visa: 20 points
  • Medicare card: 10 points
  • Statement of Service (click here for more information);
  • Bank Account Details, including your BSB and account number;
  • Tax file number;
  • Superannuation information including account number and name of fund
Q14. I heard that I need to pay for my own Mandatory Training. Is this true?

Yes. With the recent changes to State Health Service requirements for agency nurses, it is now a requirement for ALL AGENCY nurses to have completed Annual Mandatory Training PRIOR to being presented for work. The most efficient way for us to facilitate this is for us to supply agency staff with the required on-line modules on completion of the registration process. As of October 3, 2011, this is a cost that you need to bear UNTIL such time that you commence your first contract with CQ Nurse. This cost will be reimbursed by CQ Nurse once you have commenced your initial contract with CQ.

Along the way:
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Q1. When do we get paid?
A. For Agency contracts - our pay week runs from Monday to Sunday. Signed timesheets must be faxed through to our office on FAX: (07) 4998 5545 by midday on Monday of each week. Pays are processed and should be available in your bank account the following Thursday. Click here for more information. For Placement contracts - it will depend on the facility and how their pay systems work.
Q2. Do I have to have my timesheet signed?
A. For Agency contracts - yes, your timesheet must be signed by your supervisor or other person of authority for that facility. For some nurses, this may require you to complete your timesheet, fax it to your supervisor (who may be in another town) and then fax it to us for processing. For Placement contracts - it wil depend on the facility and how their pay systems work.
Q3. Can another nurse with whom I work sign my timesheet?
A. No, your timesheet must be signed by the authorized person from the facility.
Q4. I am working on a contract for CQ Nurse but I am receiving my payslip from the facility. Why don't I get a payslip from CQ Nurse?
A. There are two ways of working with CQ Nurse - one is to be employed by our agency, and the other is to be employed by the facility.  If you are employed by us, you are required to fill in a timesheet, fax it to us and we pay you.  If however, you are employed by the facility, the facility will pay your wages. However, as an added bonus for you, we pay you a placement bonus for each week worked (paid at the completion of a contract only - this is forfeited if you do not complete your contract in its entirety).*Not applicable in all states.
Q5. Are any Bonuses available?
A. Yes we have many types of bonuses available, including:
  • Placement Bonus- refer to Q4.
  • Primary Health Care Bonus
  • Registered Midwife Bonus
  • Bring ya Buddy Along Bonus

Click here for more information

Q6. Will CQ Nurse provide me with a reference?
A. CQ Nurse cannot provide you with a reference verifying your clinical skills as we do not work directly with you. However, if you would like us to provide your next intended employer with information regarding your time with us we are able to give written feedback regarding placements and lengths of service, and any work performance issues, incidents and medication errors that may have occurred, and whether we would be willing to work with you again. Also at your request, we can provide a statement of service demonstrating hours of work and incremental level paid during your employment with us.
Q7. What if I like it at my placement and want to stay permanently?
A. This is possible and there would be no cost to the nurse. CQ Nurse will ensure that all parties are satisfied with the intended arrangement and charge the facility a fee to facilitate this transition.
Q8. What is the process if I want to work in WA?

WA Health operates the provision of agency staff through a body called NurseWest. CQ Nurse is no longer on the WA Tender BUT we have partnered with another agency to be able to provide our nurses with the opportunities to head to the wild west! Want more info? Check out the Working in Western Australia fact sheet.

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