2 Sep 2011

Fiji tightens registration of nurses

7:58 am on 2 September 2011

Fiji's interim Health Minister says his people no longer want to be treated like guinea pigs and foreign nurses will need to gain registration from a new council if they want to practise in Fiji.

Dr Neil Sharma says the Cabinet has approved a new nursing decree regulating foreign and local nurses, midwives and independent nurse practitioners, who will all now need an annual licence to work.

He says a new Fiji Nursing Council will replace old governing boards and every nurse will need to meet ongoing education requirements to stay registered to work.

He also says that under the decree, nurses on temporary projects such as teaching or research will need to be registered with the Council to protect the public interest.

"Any nurse coming in here to Fiji will have to apply to the Council for registration, whether it's conditional or temporary, if they're coming in for short periods. Sometimes you find that in developing countries, you have all sorts of people coming in and doing all sorts of things which they wouldn't be able to do in their own country. We no longer want to be treated like guinea pigs."