How to Immigrate as a Pharmacist to Australia in 2023

"Learn how to immigrate as a pharmacist to Australia in 2023. Our comprehensive guide covers the requirements, steps, and FAQs to help you navigate.

 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:

  1. The employer must be in Australia’s approved regional areas (not Brisbane, Sydney, or Melbourne).
  2. 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.
  3. The retail pharmacy must be on the list of occupations, which it is right now.
  4. 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).
  5. 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

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.

Permanent Residence

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.


Pharmacists can immigrate to Australia just like other medical professionals, but only if they meet certain requirements. The process to immigrate as a pharmacist to Australia includes becoming a member of the Australian Pharmacy Board, applying for a VISA subclass 494, becoming certified by the Australian Pharmacy Council, and finishing the supervised practice phase. After meeting all the requirements, candidates can apply for a Skilled Regional 191 Permanent Residency VISA and live and work permanently in Australia.

It is important to note that the immigration process is not easy and can be quite challenging. Candidates must be prepared to invest time and money into their application and ensure that they meet all the necessary requirements. Additionally, candidates must demonstrate expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness throughout the process to be successful.

If you are a foreign pharmacist considering immigration to Australia, it is recommended that you consult with an immigration lawyer or a reputable agency to guide you through the process. This will help to ensure that you are making informed decisions and that you are following the correct procedures.


Q: Can I immigrate to Australia as a pharmacist in 2023?

A: Yes, pharmacists are in high demand in Australia, and the country has a specific visa category for skilled workers, including pharmacists. To be eligible, you must meet certain qualifications and work experience requirements.\

Q: What are the qualifications and work experience requirements to immigrate as a pharmacist to Australia?

A: To be eligible for a skilled worker visa as a pharmacist, you must have a Bachelor's degree or higher in pharmacy and at least two years of work experience as a pharmacist. You may also need to demonstrate your English language proficiency by taking an approved language test.

Q: How do I apply for a skilled worker visa as a pharmacist in Australia?

A: You must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) through the Department of Home Affairs SkillSelect system. If you are invited to apply for a visa, you will need to submit a formal application and provide supporting documentation, including your qualifications, work experience, and language test results.

Q: How long does it take to process a skilled worker visa application for pharmacists in Australia?

A: The processing time for skilled worker visa applications can vary depending on a variety of factors, including your individual circumstances and the current demand for your occupation. In general, the processing time can take anywhere from a few months to a year or more.

Q: What is the demand for pharmacists in Australia?

A: The demand for pharmacists in Australia is high, particularly in rural and regional areas. The country has a shortage of pharmacists, and the government has implemented various measures to attract and retain skilled workers in the field, including offering incentives to work in certain areas.

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