A Mixed Picture: The Experience of Overseas Trained Nurses in New Zealand


  • Leonie Walker New Zealand Nurses Organisation


There has long been information that some migrant nurses (especially those from developing countries and those for whom English is a second language) report significant hardship and distress linked to difficulties experienced with migration and employment as Registered Nurses in New Zealand. There has been much anecdotal evidence of individual exploitation linked to overseas emigration advisers, immigration advisors and employment agencies based in

New Zealand, and of employers in New Zealand requiring binding contracts obliging nurses to work as Care Givers or Care Assistants with terms and conditions and rates of pay far below those they had been led to expect. A project is currently being undertaken by the New Zealand Organisation of Nurses in two separate parts. This paper outlines the results and implications of the first part of the study: an anonymous survey of overseas trained nurses examining the issues, and mapping the extent of the experiences reported anecdotally. The results are presented in the context of other information on the international migration of nurses, and in particular, the implications for the health care services of New Zealand


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