About 77 per cent of July nurse graduates had nursing jobs by the end of September, according to the latest graduate survey findings.
The graduate destination survey of the 502 graduates who passed state finals this winter found that 346 had jobs by September 30.
That is equivalent to 77 per cent of the nearly 420 mid-year graduates who responded to the annual NETS (Nurse Education in the Tertiary Sector) survey or 69% of the 502 new graduates who passed state finals in July).
Of the remaining 156 mid-year graduates 64 (12.7%) were actively looking for work, eight were not seeking RN work and there was no data from 83 (16.5%)*.
About 294 of the graduates had gained places in NETP (nurse entry to practice) programmes by the end of September, which is up on the 278 mid-year graduates known to have gained NETP jobs by the end of August, according to the Ministry of Health statistics released in September. Most of the NETP positions were in medical (74) or surgical wards (68) followed by 47 in mental health (i.e. NESP or new entry to specialist practice positions), 29 in child health and 23 in primary health care.
The NETs graduate destination survey also captures data on graduates who find jobs outside of the NETP scheme, with 53 known to have gained non-NETP positions.
The majority of the non-NETP jobs were once again in continuing care elderly – with 33 in the residential aged care sector. Concern was expressed last year by the New Zealand Nurses Organisation at the high number of new graduates being employed in aged care without the support of a mentored NETP programme. Nursing Review also reported earlier this year that the number of new graduates employed into supported NETP places in the aged care sector had nearly halved to 16 at the start of this year compared to 30 at the same time the previous year.
The next most common areas for non-NETP jobs were primary health (8) and surgical (3). One new graduate had gained a nursing position overseas.
Eight nursing schools had mid-year cohorts sitting state finals in July (a further eight graduates from five other schools also successfully sat state finals in July). The nursing schools’ graduate job rates, ranged from 68 per cent to 90 per cent of their mid-year graduates having nursing jobs by the end of September.
*No survey data was received for the 50 Unitec new graduate nurses who passed state finals in July or from 33 graduates from five other schools.