Mental Health Nurse Skills in Demand Visa

Mental Health Nurses of any age are eligible to live and work in Australia via the Skills in Demand Employer Sponsored Visa provided they secure a job offer and have the right skills and qualifications for the position.

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How to Work in Australia as a Mental Health Nurse


The occupation Mental Health Nurse is on the 2024 Australia Core Skills Occupation List (CSOL). This means Mental Health Nurses are eligible for the Skills in Demand Visa.


This is an Employer Sponsored Work Visa, valid for four years and renewable once. The Skills in Demand Visa offers a pathway to Permanent Residence for Mental Health Nurses with visa processing times of between 7 and 21 days.

Skills in Demand Visa criteria for a Mental Health Nurse


  • Hold an AHPRA License to practice
  • Degree in Mental Health Nursing OR;
  • Nursing Degree with a Mental Health Conversion
  • Pass Police and Background checks
  • Have no adverse medical conditions
  • Be competent in English
  • Offer of Full Time Employment as a Mental Health Nurse

Employer Sponsored Work Visas for Mental Health Nurses in Australia


In 2024, Australia introduced the Skills in Demand Visa, replacing the Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) Employer Sponsored Visa (Subclass 482). This new visa better aligns with the current economic needs of Australia by targeting specific skills that are in high demand such as Mental Health Nurses.


Key Features of the Skills in Demand Visa for Mental Health Nurse Jobs in Australia


The Skills in Demand Employer Sponsored Visa consists of three tiers aimed at different levels of Mental Health Nurse:


Specialist Skills Pathway: For specialized Mental Health Nurses earning a minimum salary of $135,000 the Skills in Demand work visa will be issued in less than 7 days.


Core Skills Pathway: This pathway is for professional Mental Health Nurses with an employment offer paying more than AUD$70,000.


The ANZSCO Code for a Mental Health Nurse in Australia is 254422 and the occupation is on the updated Core Skills Occupation List. Work visa applicants with a job offer will receive their visa in less than 21 days.


Essential Skills Pathway: Is for Mental Health Nurses earning less than AUD$70,000 per year and work visa applicants will get their visa in 21 days or less.


The impact for Mental Health Nurses wanting to work in Australia


With the Skills in Demand Visa the pathway to living and working in Australia as a Mental Health Nurse has become much more simple and straightforward.


Compared to the Skilled Migration & TSS pathways, the SID Visa is the cheapest, easiest and quickest way to work in Australia as a Mental Health Nurse.


The Skills in Demand Visa still requires employer sponsorship, yet all streams of the SID Visa provide clear pathways to permanent residency.


Skills in Demand Visa Requirements for a Mental Health Nurse


AHPRA Registration


The first step is to get your AHPRA Registration in Australia as a Mental Health Nurse. This is a mandatory part of the process.


Skills Assessment for Mental Health Nurses is a complicated process, involving many moving elements. You are required to validate and evidence your identity, skills, experience and qualifications as a Mental Health Nurse.


AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency) regulates the registration process for overseas nurses.


Start with AHPRA’s self-check process. Provide your personal details, degree name, and where you studied. Based on this, AHPRA will place you into one of three streams (A, B, or C). Your stream determines your next steps.


Nurses from the United Kingdom, Ireland, United States and Canada will usually be placed into Stream A.


If placed in Stream A, complete Orientation Part 1, which costs $640. This online training familiarizes you with the Australian healthcare system. You have 90 days to complete this orientation.


After the orientation you will be invited to make your AHPRA registration application.


Prepare and submit the following documents:


  • AGSE-40 Form: The application form for general registration.
  • Proof of Identity: Certified copies of your passport, driver’s license, and other IDs.
  • Statement of Employment: Documentation from employers covering the past five years.
  • Proof of English Proficiency: Letters from educational institutions proving your education was conducted in English.
  • University Transcripts: Detailed records of your nursing education, including clinical hours.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV): Follow AHPRA’s template, including skills, employment gaps, and signed declaration.
  • Degree Certificate: Certified copy of your nursing degree.
  • Fit2Work: International criminal history check.
  • NMC Certificate of Good Standing: Proof of good standing from your home country’s nursing board.


Ensure all documents are certified by an authorized person. This includes signing, initialing, and dating each page.


Only after AHPRA registration can you have meaningful conversations with employers because you are ‘Work Ready’.


Migration Consultant LLC can assist with your Mental Health Nurse AHPRA registration and then refer you to our Medical Migration specialist recruiters. All we require from you is the right information at the right time.


Fill out the Online Resume Builder below to start the process of applying for Mental Health Nursing Jobs in Australia

Unlock Dedicated Mental Health Nurse Recruitment Services in Australia


After Skills Assessment you are ‘Job Ready’. There is no age limit for a Skills in Demand Visa for a Mental Health Nurse to work in Australia. It is the best option available to live and work in Australia.


In 2024, Migration Consultant LLC acquired Top Jobs in Australia™, a dedicated recruitment firm specializing in the placement of Internationally qualified Mental Health Nurses for the Skills in Demand Employer Sponsored Visa.


Our recruitment service is free to you although you must be ‘Job Ready’ first with your Skills assessment and Mental Health Nurse Licensing in place.


If our recruitment team find you a job then there are no Visa fees to pay as we ensure these are covered and arranged by your new employer. We also ensure some form of relocation is included such as flights and shipping though this does depend on your experience and the Mental Health Nurse role you are applying for.


You are not obligated to use our low cost Skills Assessment service, but Top Jobs in Australia™ cannot represent you without this in place first.


Take advantage of our free eligibility check to see if you are eligible to work in Australia as a Mental Health Nurse and to check if you will pass the Skills Assessment process.

Benefits of the Skills in Demand Visa for Mental Health Nurses

  • No age limit
  • Valid for 4 years, renewable once
  • Work in Australia as Mental Health Nurses
  • Enter and leave Australia when you choose
  • Change employers without losing work experience points
  • Your family are included
  • 180 days to find a new Sponsor if you leave your role
  • Pathway to Permanent Residence
  • Visa Processing times of 21 days or less
  • Shortage of Mental Health Nurses in Australia
  • Better work life balance
  • Improved salary and respect

How Employers in Australia can hire Mental Health Nurses from overseas?


Employers in Australia looking to hire Mental Health Nurses from overseas with the “Skills in Demand Visa”will find this process now easier when compared with previous Employer Sponsored Visas.


The Skills in Demand visa builds on aspects of the Temporary Skill Shortage visa, simplifying certain requirements that were previously seen as overly complex.


Simplified Labor Market Testing


As of December 2023, the mandate for employers to advertise positions through Workforce Australia has been eliminated. Employers now need to run only two valid advertisements for their Mental Health Nurse positions, down from the previous three.


Additionally, the period for which an advertisement must remain valid has extended from four to six months. Employers should complete their advertising within this six-month window before submitting a visa nomination application.


Looking ahead, the government will shift from requiring employer-driven advertising to relying on independent verification of labor market needs by Jobs and Skills Australia (JSA).


Revamped Fee Structure


Currently, sponsors face various fees including sponsorship ($420), nomination ($330) fees, and the Skilling Australian Fund (SAF) levy (up to $7200).


The new Skills in Demand visa for Mental Health Nurses will introduce a trailing fee model, reducing the financial burden of upfront payments.


This change will also accommodate easier transitions for workers between employers, removing the hefty upfront cost burden from the initial sponsoring employer.


This adjustment represents a significant improvement for employers.


Enhanced Employer Compliance


The Migration Amendment (Strengthening Employer Compliance) Act, effective from 1 July 2024, introduces stricter penalties and establish new offenses for violations of sponsorship obligations.


The approval process for Mental Health Nurse sponsorship applications will see increased scrutiny. Employer workplace practices, compliance history, any negative findings from regulatory bodies, and past bankruptcies will undergo thorough examination to ensure rigorous vetting.


Additional steps will be taken to enhance post-arrival monitoring and ensure employers adhere to fair pay and conditions for workers. This involves coordination with the tax system and the integration of Tax File Numbers and Single Touch Payroll systems.


These changes aim to streamline the hiring process under the Skills in Demand visa, making it more straightforward for employers to hire overseas qualified Mental Health Nursesand meet their obligations, while protecting the rights of their new hires.


Migration Consultant LLC only work with already approved employer sponsors which simplifies the hiring process between interviews and job offer.

What are the Job Prospects for a Mental Health Nurse in Australia?

Australia’s healthcare system has a critical shortage of qualified Mental Health Nurses. This demand creates numerous job opportunities across various settings, including hospitals, community health centers, private practices, and non-profit organizations.


Mental health nurses in Australia can work in diverse environments, each offering unique experiences and challenges. From acute care in hospitals to long-term support in community settings, nurses have the chance to specialize and develop expertise in different areas of mental health care.


Australia prioritizes continuous professional development, providing mental health nurses with ample opportunities for further education and training. Nurses can pursue advanced certifications, attend workshops, and engage in research, ensuring they remain at the forefront of mental health practice globally.


The work culture in Australian healthcare is collaborative and supportive. Mental health nurses work in teams where every member’s contribution is valued. The profession not only delivers personal and professional growth but also  make a profound difference in the lives of many Australians.

Average salaries for Mental Health Nurses working in Australia

The average salary for mental health nurses in Australia depends on experience, location, and specific job roles.


  • Average Salary: Mental health nurses in Australia earn an average of AU$81,900 per year.


  • Entry-Level Salaries: New graduates can expect to start at around AU$49,100 per year.


  • Experienced Nurses: Senior mental health nurses with significant experience can earn up to AU$190,000 per year​


New South Wales (NSW)


  • Average: AU$86,976 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$150,000 for senior roles​.


Victoria (VIC)


  • Average: AU$81,254 per year
  • Top Salaries: Experienced nurses can earn up to AU$138,000​


Queensland (QLD)


  • Average: AU$86,154 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$120,000 for senior positions​


Western Australia (WA)


  • Average: AU$85,940 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$130,000 for senior roles​


South Australia (SA)


  • Average: AU$82,000 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$115,000 for experienced nurses


Tasmania (TAS)


  • Average: AU$77,000 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$95,000​


Australian Capital Territory (ACT)


  • Average: AU$88,000 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$120,000 for senior positions​


Northern Territory (NT)


  • Average: AU$87,000 per year
  • Top Salaries: Up to AU$120,000 for experienced nurses​

Can I change employers?

The new Skills in Demand Visa provides a 180-day grace period for visa holders to secure new employment if they lose their current Mental Health Nursing  job. This is a significant increase from the previous 60-day period under the TSS 482 visa.


During this 180-day period, visa holders can continue working while they search for a new sponsor. This provision ensures that there is no gap in employment, which is crucial for those aiming to qualify for permanent residency (PR).


Time spent working with an approved employer counts towards the requirements for PR. This means time accrued with a previous employer before securing a new job will still be recognized.

Do I need to do an English Test to work as a Mental Health Nurse in Australia?

If you are a registered Mental Health Nurse in the UK, USA, Canada, Ireland or New Zealand and your Tertiary education was taught primarily in English you do not need to pass an English Language Test.

How long does the recruitment process take take?

After your AHPRA registration has been completed our dedicated Medical recruiters in Queensland, Victoria, New South Wales, Northern Territory will start introducing you to their extensive network of contacts to match you with suitable employers who will also Sponsor you. Actual Visa Processing time for a Mental Health Nurse is less than 21 days from acceptance of job offer and submission of application.

Can I switch from a Working Holiday Visa to a Skills in Demand Visa as a Mental Health Nurse?

Yes, you can switch from a Working Holiday Visa to a Skills in Demand Visa as a Mental Health Nurse in Australia. However, to work in any capacity as a Mental Health Nurse in Australia, you must be licensed by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

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