Rural Nursing 

Get the best of both worlds

Canterbury is all about the people and the fabulous lifestyle, so why not combine these and become a Rural Nurse?

With the focus being on the close knit community, rural nurses get tremendous job satisfaction from caring for the people in their community, getting to know them and working with other health professionals to ensure their community is looked after.

Whether you’re on the coast in Kaikoura or on the plains in Ashburton, there are opportunities for Rural Nurses throughout the Canterbury region, with a lifestyle to match.  See the rural locations available to you.  Whether an inpatient or community setting appeals, we have something for everyone.

No day is the same for a Rural Nurse. Nursing in a rural community not only enables you to see firsthand the care you’re providing but you will also become a generalist and specialist all in one.

Working autonomously and often in isolation means you will extend your knowledge and skills in all clinical settings from acute to long term to maternity care. With the introduction of a Rural Nursing Diploma, this area of nursing is now recognised as a specialty and is fast becoming a popular choice for many nurses. See what clinical areas we have to offer.

What do I need to become a Rural Nurse?

There are no specific qualifications to become a Rural Nurse, you just need to be Registered with the Nursing Council of New Zealand and have an up to date annual practicing certificate.

Should you wish to specialise in rural nursing, there is a postgraduate course at Otago University covering all aspects of Rural Nursing.

Attributes which make a great Rural Nurse are; the ability to work autonomously but also in consultation with the wider multi disciplinary team, confidence in your nursing skills and knowledge as often you work in isolation and an understanding of the needs of your community. Building positive relationships with patients and colleagues alike will ensure you provide holistic care to your patients.

You don’t need to work in remote rural areas to experience the challenges and excitement of rural nursing, you can enjoy the autonomy and variety of skills in any of the 9 rural hospitals throughout the Canterbury region. You will enjoy working in a close knit team, being exposed to clinical experiences not available to those in a large tertiary hospital while still enjoying the benefits of professional development and career opportunities in a large organisation.

Click to learn more about the Regional Professional Development and Recognition Programme


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