4 October 2019
OET recognised by the Paramedicine Board of Australia Internationally trained paramedics seeking to work in Australia are now able to prove English language proficiency by taking the Occupational English Test (OET), an English language test designed specifically for healthcare professionals. The Paramedicine Board of Australia (the Board) regulates paramedics in Australia under the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme (the National Law) and requires all applicants for initial registration to demonstrate English language skills to be suitable for registration. The Board’s functions are supported by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), which is responsible for the registration and accreditation of 15 health professions in Australia under the National Law. The Board has recognised the Occupational English Test (OET) as evidence of English proficiency to register to work as a paramedic in Australia. The English language skills registration standard for paramedics (ELS standard) sets out how an applicant for registration can demonstrate to the Board that their competence in speaking and communicating in English is sufficient to practise the paramedicine profession. OET is an international English language test that assesses the language skills of healthcare professionals seeking to register and practice in an English-speaking environment. Currently, there is no paramedicine specific OET, and therefore, there is no OET test specified in the ELS registration standard. The Board has agreed, however, that an equivalent pass of the OET test for any other registered health profession will meet the Board’s requirements for registration. For example, an applicant who has successfully undertaken a Pharmacy OET test and has a minimum score of B in each of the four components (listening, reading, writing and speaking) either from one test sitting, or a maximum of two test sittings in a six month period (only if they are tested in all four components in each sitting, and they achieve a minimum score of B in each component across the two sittings, and no score in any component of the test is below C), will be deemed to have met the requirements of the ELS standard for paramedicine. OET CEO Sujata Stead said: “We are pleased to welcome paramedics to our comprehensive list of Australian healthcare boards that recognise OET as evidence of English proficiency. Together with our recognition by Australia’s Department of Home Affairs, paramedics who trained overseas can take a single test to meet both their visa and registration requirements.” “Although OET does not offer a paramedicine-specific test, unlike other English tests recognised by the Board, OET test materials are based on real healthcare scenarios and are therefore more appropriate for paramedics than a general English language test that offers no healthcare content whatsoever,” she concluded. OET is recognised by healthcare regulators in the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Dubai, Malta and Ukraine for registration, employment and education purposes, as well as for immigration and visas in Australia and New Zealand. In the UK, doctors, nurses, midwives and dentists applying for a Tier 2 (General) visa no longer need to take a separate English test if they have taken OET to register with the relevant regulatory body. For additional information, please see the Paramedicine Board of Australia website.
16 January 2020
Immigration New Zealand re-affirms recognition of OET Internationally trained healthcare professionals seeking to work or holiday in New Zealand may continue to use their OET results as evidence of English language proficiency for visa and immigration purposes. Immigration New Zealand, the government department that looks after New Zealand’s border security and grants visas to eligible applicants, recently signed a deed of agreement engaging Cambridge Boxhill Language Assessment (the owner of OET) to continue to provide English language test services for Immigration New Zealand. The deed was signed by Immigration New Zealand and OET CEO Sujata Stead. “We have enjoyed an excellent relationship with Immigration New Zealand since they first recognised OET in 2016. The new deed is evidence of their continued trust in OET as a highly secure and reliable English language test for the purposes of meeting their English language requirements,” said Stead. She added: “New Zealand is seeing a rise in demand for skilled healthcare workers with an aging population and increase in chronic illnesses – so there is a growing demand for skilled workers with strong communication skills.” “OET is unique among international English language tests in that it replicates real healthcare communication scenarios and the clinical communication of test-takers, to ensure they are best placed to deliver quality patient-centred care.” Immigration New Zealand has made no changes to its OET requirements. In the Skilled Migrant Category, healthcare professionals require grade B or higher in all four skills (Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking) and test results must be no more than two years old at the time an application is lodged.
Therefore, it is clear from the above that OET is going to open the door for healthcare professionals including nurses and midwifes to the UK, Australia, NZ and Ireland.
In conclusion, this is a right time to start a nursing and hospitality academy with UK curriculum to target Au/NZ/Ireland/UK/EU/Middle East. Hence, we need govt funding.