How to Immigrate as a Pharmacist to Australia in 2023
Australia is a great place for foreign pharmacists to establish a lucrative career and obtain permanent residency after three years of practice. However, there are specific requirements that candidates must fulfill, including a period of supervised practice, depending on their place of origin.
1. Become a member of the Australian Pharmacy Board
The Pharmacy Board of Australia requires all licensed pharmacists to register with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). You may also need to submit an international criminal history check from an ICHC-approved supplier. You must be registered before the check is finished.
2. Apply for a VISA subclass 494
Foreign pharmacists can move to Australia with a VISA and a path to permanent residency. To do this, pharmacists must work for a company that has received the nod from the regional certifying body in the designated region and offers adequate employment. The following prerequisites must also be satisfied:
- The employer must be in Australia’s approved regional areas (not Brisbane, Sydney, or Melbourne).
- The position must be full-time and anticipated to be open for three years before the applicant applies for a 191 Visa to become a permanent resident.
- The retail pharmacy must be on the list of occupations, which it is right now.
- Candidates must be under 45, have at least three years of full-time, relevant job experience, and be able to speak English with proficiency before lodging (IELTS 6.0).
- Both steps must be finished simultaneously, and success in one does not ensure success in the other.
3. Become certified by the Australian Pharmacy Council
- The Australian Pharmacy Council may process applications through the knowledge or competency streams. Candidates for the knowledge stream are required to complete an internship following the guidelines of a recognized program.
- Candidates who earned their degree in a nation other than Australia, Canada, Ireland, the UK, New Zealand, or the US are eligible for the knowledge stream.
- The skill assessment framework requires passing the first eligibility check and the Knowledge Assessment of Pharmaceutical Sciences (KAPS) exam. The exam price is AU$2,140, and the eligibility test is AU$1,290.
- Candidates who earned their pharmacy degree in Canada, Ireland, the UK, or the US are eligible for the competency stream. Candidates who are now enrolled in one of these nations are also covered.
- Candidates for the competency stream must also pass the Competency Assessment of Overseas Pharmacists (CAOP) Examination and an eligibility test. The price for the eligibility test is AU$1,290, and the exam is AU$1,870.
4. Finish the supervised practice phase
After meeting all the requirements mentioned above, candidates can continue to finish their supervised practice in Australia with their new company, which will supply a preceptor. Candidates in the competency and knowledge streams can take a registration assessment under the direction of the Pharmacy Board after completing 75% of the practice hours. The evaluation will gauge a candidate’s understanding of pharmacy law and ethics through oral and written exams.
Candidates can now receive their general registration and immigrate to Australia as pharmacists after finishing the necessary supervised practice hours.
After meeting the requirements, candidates may apply for a Skilled Regional 191 Permanent Residency VISA. Although the 494 VISA is only suitable for five years, interested pharmacists can apply after three. Pharmacists are eligible without employer nominations. The VISA enables pharmacists to live and work permanently in Australia. Additionally, it gives the authority to apply for citizenship and sponsor family members for immigration to Australia.