Frequently Asked Questions

Experience, qualifications and requirements

Unfortunately, we require all nurses to have a minimum of two years post-graduate experience to work rural and remote. However, our sister agencies under Health Solutions Group Australia may be able to help with work during this time! You can find out more about your local agency here

This doesn’t mean you need to have a post-graduate certificate, just two years clinical experience after graduating. This is a requirement as these initial two years can offer you clinical support that is sometimes not possible with agency nursing. Occasionally, you may not get as thorough an orientation as you’d like and having this experience behind you will allow you to “hit the ground running”.
We’d love to hear from you again after you’ve gained two years post-graduate experience!
There are different requirements based on type of work, location and experience. What is required for certain places/roles is something we can discuss with you during your application process as we will have a better understanding of what it is you’re looking for.
If you’re looking for contracts in the position of a Registered Nurse, we will require you to have two years clinical experience working in the scope of a Registered Nurse. Agency nurses are expected to “hit the ground running”, so this experience will be valuable to you in rural and remote nursing.
It’s always best for us to have a look at your CV so we can see in detail how much experience you’ve had in each area. From there, we can advise you on where we would best be able to place you, based on your experience and the type of contracts we generally receive.
Put simply, contracts for EENs are more infrequent than those for RNs, as contracts for EENs are generally for Aged Care or small rural facilities. While we need and love our EENs, due to the sporadic nature of contracts in rural/remote agency nursing, signing up to a casual pool back home is the best way to ensure your own financial stability.
Generally, we don’t receive contracts solely for Immunisation Nurses. In partnership with our sister agencies under Health Solutions Group Australia, we do offer a Corporate Health program across QLD, VIC, NSW and WA. Our Corporate Health program does require casual Immunisation Nurses for the flu season. So, if you’re looking for casual work during flu season, we’d love to hear from you!

Register for work
No, however they are certainly beneficial. Certain locations and health districts do require nurses to have these certificates however it’s not a pre-requisite for CQ Nurse and we have contracts for Remote Area Nurses in locations where the certificates are not mandatory.
Having these certificates will benefit you as it will allow for more contract opportunities. We also encourage taking these courses as the knowledge and skills that you will learn from them will be advantageous whilst out on contract, even if you aren’t working in a location that requires these certificates.
Not at all! If you are in good physical and mental health and are fit to perform the inherent requirements of a nursing position, then we encourage you to apply.
CQ Nurse provides all our nurses with the appropriate coverage for both professional indemnity insurance, workers compensation insurance and associated business insurances whilst they are working on assignment for us. Obviously, should you be working for any other employers, it’s best to check their arrangements directly.
At a minimum and depending on location, facilities require nurses to have been vaccinated against Hepatitis B, Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Varicella and Measles, Mumps and Rubella (if born post 1966). If you are unable to have one of these vaccinations due to an allergic reaction, facilities will generally accept a signed letter from your doctor stating as such.

Contracts and rates

Contract lengths vary depending on both the facilities’ needs and your availability, however most contracts average between 4-12 weeks. While some shorter and longer-term contracts are occasionally available the more flexible and open you can be, the more contract choices and options you will see come your way!
There are many factors that contribute to an agency nurse’s rate of pay, and so unfortunately there is no one flat rate that will be relevant to you across every contract. There are two types of contracts, and therefore also two types of ways you can be paid: agency rates or placement rates (see below).
Agency rates mean that you will be paid by us (CQ Nurse) each week. These rates are a higher rate of pay up front as they are a casual rate. Placement rates means you will be paid by the facility that you are contracted to and put directly onto their payroll. Facilities generally pay slightly less than agency rates, but also offer the potential to accrue entitlements such as sick leave, annual leave and rostered days off (RDO). Both placement and agency rates can differ depending on state and location (e.g. regional, rural or remote), however you will always be told your rate of pay for each CQ Nurse contract that you undertake prior to officially accepting or declining the position. We will outline the advantages and considerations for both types of contracts for you in more detail during your onboarding process with CQ Nurse.
Agency work is sporadic in nature and when working with a nursing agency such as CQ Nurse, flexibility is key. The more wide-spread your location search, and the more open you are to differing contract timeframes, the more options we will be able to give to you. However, while we often have more jobs to fill than we do nurses, we cannot always guarantee work. We recommend signing up to a ‘casual’ pool back home, to ensure that you have the option of working and having finances coming in during a time that you wish to be or need to be at home or during any quiet periods.

General questions

While this is possible, it can sometimes be difficult to navigate depending on the circumstances. You will find that facilities do not offer any specific travel assistance for family members’ plane fares or pet transport. Most facilities are more than happy for you to travel with your family or loved ones, however you will be required to fund the cost of their travel. Many also offer single-person nurses’ quarters as their accommodation option and are often either unable or unwilling to subsidise any alternative accommodation that you may choose to stay in, and therefore such accommodation will be at your own expense. In saying this, there are a few facilities around that do have accommodation options available that are suited to a family. In most cases, however, we find that if you are travelling with a family or animal, travelling in a caravan/campervan is a great way to compromise. If the hospital/clinic you are contracted to have the facilities for you to park your van onsite, they will generally offer this. Otherwise, caravan parks are readily available in most towns and are a cheaper alternative than booking a family-sized hotel room.
CQ Nurse recognizes that rural and remote nursing has daily challenges unlike any others and understands that your first few contracts as an agency nurse can be quite daunting. Because of this, we pride ourselves on the support that we offer to our nurses. We will check in with you regularly whilst you are on contract to ensure that all is going well, and we are always available on the other end of the phone if you have any issues on contract, have missed your flight, are feeling a bit homesick or if you just want to chat! Your safety is of the upmost importance, and so we also have an emergency phone that is operational outside of our office hours for any emergency situations that may always occur and have a consultant on call to assist.
In most cases, facilities will offer accommodation as an inclusive aspect of your contract, whether that be in the form of nurses’ quarters, a unit or house that is rented by the facility, or a share house. This accommodation is usually provided at no cost to you, however there are a small number of facilities who offer accommodation at a subsidised cost or require a weekly rental fee. We will always let you know what the accommodation provisions of each contract are.
Like accommodation, travel assistance is offered in most cases, however the level of assistance will vary between facilities and contracts. CQ Nurse has an in-house travel consultant who will liaise with you regarding the best travel options for getting you safely to and from your contract location, make all travel bookings on your behalf, and send you a pre-organised travel itinerary.

Nurses from overseas

With the nature of work that we do, at CQ Nurse we are unable to offer sponsorship. However, our sister agency Alliance Health, may be able to assist you with this. You can contact them by phone on +61 2 9310 6544 or via their website You can also visit Health Solutions Group Australia for more information about working as a nurse in Australia.

Get In Touch

If you have any other questions, our team is here to help. Contact us or call us on 07 4998 5550

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