Congratulations to all the pharmacists who have cleared the KAPS exam.
Clearing the KAPS exam is in itself a milestone for pharmacists, quite hard to achieve. However, it is not the end of the road but the beginning of a process and a series of events that finally lead to permanent residency in Australia!
While you prepare hard for the KAPS exam, you must also prepare yourself for the journey ahead. You must consider the steps you must take and the different pathways you can choose from to ensure you are not left clueless about what to do after clearing the KAPS exam!
In this article, we will provide a detailed step-by-step guide to the process you can undergo to set up practice in Australia after you crack the KAPS exam.
In order to initiate practice as a pharmacist in Australia, you must get AHPRA registration.
The Australian Health Practitioner Registration Agency is responsible for offering provisional and permanent registration to the candidates. Attaining this registration is mandatory for pharmacists and other healthcare professionals who wish to set up practice in Australia.
Before going forward with the registration process, you must check whether you are eligible or not. The eligibility criteria include the following-
If you are eligible for registration, you must ensure you have the necessary documents with you, which include-
There are two types of fees involved in AHPRA registration: Application fee and registration fee.
The Registration fee amount is updated annually, and for the year 2023/24, it is set to be AUD 452.
The application fee, on the other hand, is AUD 151, which is non-refundable.
Let us now talk about an important requirement when it comes to AHPRA registration, which is the English Proficiency Test. To acquire provisional registration and a work visa in Australia, proving your excellence in English is vital, which you can do with the following exams-
An IELTS Academic score of 7 bands (individual as well as overall) is required to be eligible to apply for AHPRA registration.
Academically helps you prepare for the IELTS exam through an online mode within 45 days. Read more about the course here.
A passing score of 65 is good enough if you wish to prove your English proficiency via PTE Academic and apply for AHPRA registration. PTE is the easiest and the most effective way for healthcare professionals to apply for registration and visa.
Checkout the PTE preparation course by Academically here- https://academically.com/english-proficiency-test/pearson-test-of-english-preparation-course/
An OET score of 350 out of 500, or Grade B, is good enough for professionals to apply for AHPRA registration.
OET is another easy exam that helps professionals prove their excellence in English within a short time. Read more about the OET exam and the OET preparation course by Academically here-
When you have all the necessary documents and certificates ready with you, applying for AHPRA registration is a cakewalk! Follow the steps below to apply for AHPRA's provisional registration.
Following this process will allow you to receive Provisional Registration from AHPRA. The maximum processing time taken in the process is around two months.
After you receive your provisional license, you become eligible to pursue an internship in Australia. Your internship hours will be calculated, which will help you get permanent registration and a job later on.
To get an internship in an Australian healthcare facility, you need to provide the following documents to the respective authority-
Once you receive APHRA registration, you are eligible to apply for internships in Australia. You have to complete 1575 hours of internship and then pass the Intern Written Examination and Oral Examination to get general registration and uninterrupted working rights in Australia.
So, the steps involved in becoming a registered pharmacist after getting your provisional registration from AHPRA include the following-
After this, you can apply for General Registration with the AHPRA, which allows you to practise pharmacy anywhere you prefer.
Once you obtain general registration, you can start searching for jobs on several online platforms such as Seek, Indeed, etc, or reach out to recruiters personally.
Below are some tips that can help you land a good job in Australia after successful completion of your AHPRA registration-
Highlight your education, relevant certifications, and any specialized training you have undergone. Emphasize your work experience, including details about the roles you've held, the responsibilities you've taken on, and any notable achievements.
Include any additional skills, such as proficiency in pharmacy management software, knowledge of pharmaceutical regulations, or languages spoken.
A compelling cover letter can do wonders for your resume and job application, and you must alter the cover letter based on the position you are applying for. Explain why you are interested in the specific pharmacy or organization you are applying to.
Highlight how your skills and experience make you a suitable candidate for the position.
Utilize online job portals that cater to the healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors. Popular platforms in Australia include SEEK, Indeed, and Jora. Regularly update your profile and resume on these portals to stay visible to recruiters.
Connect with fellow pharmacists, professionals, and relevant groups on professional networking platforms like LinkedIn. The best job opportunities are those which are acquired from a group of friends or like-minded professionals.
Consider partnering with recruitment agencies or job consultancies specializing in healthcare and pharmaceuticals. Share your career goals, preferences, and qualifications with them so they can match you with suitable job opportunities.
Make it a habit to research the pharmacy or healthcare organization thoroughly before the interview. Be ready to discuss your experiences, problem-solving skills, and how you handle challenging situations.
Boast your knowledge and understanding of current trends and issues in the pharmaceutical industry.
Get in touch with Academically’s experts who are presently working in renowned companies throughout Australia. They will assist you in creating a robust resume and cover letter while helping you prepare well for your interview.
Academically also helps you build a community of pharmacists that stay with you forever and help you in all aspects of your life and career.
There are predominantly two types of visa that pharmacists are eligible to get after clearing the KAPS exam-
The difference between the two is that the 190 visa demands you to be nominated by the State Government Agency, while for the 491 visa, you can either be nominated by the State Government Agency or be sponsored by an eligible relative previously residing in designated regional areas.
Also, the major difference between the two is that a Subclass 190 application means directly applying for a permanent residency visa, while Subclass 491 applications mean applying for a transitional immigration visa (and you can obtain permanent residency after three years.)
To apply for a permanent residency in Australia, you need to meet the following criteria-
You can also obtain work visas- 494, 482 and 407, which are training visas. However, for 494 and 482 visas, you need a prior experience of 2 years or more.
In case you still have doubts, you must reach out to the experts at Academically. We shall help you in the complete process- from applying for the KAPS exam to getting your preferred visa.
We offer all kinds of support and guidance required to ensure your journey of migrating to Australia is smooth and free of hurdles! Apart from helping you prepare for the KAPS exam, we help you with the formalities and intricacies involved in the whole procedure.
We hope this article will help you navigate through the process of registration in Australia. For more information or doubt-clearance, get in touch with our team today!
Dr. Akram Ahmad is a clinical pharmacist and lecturer with over 10 years of teaching and research experience across various subjects of medicine in India, Malaysia and Australia. He is an educationist and a medpreneur with extensive knowledge of the global healthcare diaspora. Through his articles, videos and engaging sessions, he always aims to impart unexplored knowledge about the healthcare world to interested students and professionals.