NSW Health verification requirements

It is crucial you are verified before the commencement of your placement. If you are not verified in time, the University is not allowed to send you on placement.

We recommend you ensure that you have met all verification requirements prior to enrolling in any course with a professional experience placement or observation placement.

You will need to submit the following:

The above documents MUST BE to be submitted to NSW Health as per Submitting your Documents to NSW Health section below.

In addition, you will also need to:

  • hold a current NSW Working with Children Check clearance (paid or volunteer)  
  • have a Seasonal Influenza Vaccine (for placements undertaken from 1 Jun to 30 Sep)
  • complete the NSW Health Mandatory Training (detailed below)

Please note: Students should also be aware that individual placement organisations, including government departments, may also require students to undergo internal organisational clearance and vetting procedures and/or undertake pre-placement educational courses in readiness and eligibility for placement learning.

National Criminal Record Check (NCRC)

A National Criminal Record Check (NCRC), also known as a National Police Check/Certificate (NPC), is an Australia-wide check of a person’s criminal records history. NCRC are required as part of the NSW Ministry of Health's duty of care to patients and clients receiving health care in NSW and falls under the NSW Ministry of Health Working with Children Checks and Other Police Checks Policy.

IMPORTANT: the name appearing on your NCRC must match the name on your UON student identification card. If they do not match the NCRC will not be accepted by NSW Health. If your name changes during the course of your degree you will need to obtain and submit a new NCRC.

You must have a valid NCRC for the duration of each placement. Some students may need to renew their NCRCs during the course of their studies. NSW Health Policy indicates that NCRCs submitted from 2019 will be considered to remain valid for 5 years from the date of issue. NCRCs submitted prior to 2019 will remain valid for 3 years from the date of issue. NSW Health will not allow you to start a placement if your NCRC expires during the placement period.

It is recommended that you take your original NCRC to your first day of each placement.

ACIC Accredited Bodies

UON recommends obtaining your NCRC from an Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) Accredited Bodies. You will need to pay for your NCRC and fees may vary between Bodies.

NCRCs from ACIC Accredited Bodies may vary in format and content. The minimum compliance requirements are:

  • must be from a ACIC Accredited Bodies (as listed on ACIC’s website); and
  • must state that it is a National or Australia wide check; and
  • must include your full name and date of birth; and
  • the name appearing on the NCRC must exactly match your UON Student ID Card.

Most ACIC NCRCs will provide electronic proof of completion (e.g. email or website confirmation), however some may post you a hard copy National Police Certificate (NPC).

International Students

If you are an international student, you will need to obtain BOTH:

  • an Australian NCRC (NPC from Australian Federal Police prior to coming to NSW, or an ACIC Accredited Bodies once you are a NSW resident);

AND

  • National Police Certificates from your home country and any country where you have lived for more than 6 months since turning 18 (translated in to English);

OR

  • If you are unable to obtain the police certificate/s, you will need to complete the Statutory Declaration for Overseas Students. Please cross out any text that does not apply to you in the first paragraph. Please note this statutory declaration needs to be completed after arrival in NSW. If there are any problems with the link please copy and paste the following URL into your web browser.

What if I have a criminal record?

This does not mean that you will be automatically excluded from placement. NSW Health will assess the nature of the offences and where it is deemed appropriate a plan will be put in place to ensure your own and patient safety.

Only apply for authority to undertake Clinical Placements if/when specifically directed by NSW Health staff.

Please see your Program Placement Coordinator if you have any concerns.

What if I am subject to criminal proceedings while enrolled at UON?

If you are subject to criminal proceedings at any time during enrolment at UON your original NCRC is no longer valid. You will need to pay for a new NCRC and submit it to NSW Health. You must also inform Program Placement Coordinator.

Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct sets standards of ethical and professional conduct in NSW Health. You must read the full Code and print, complete and sign the Code of Conduct Agreement.

Influenza Vaccination (FluVax)

All students and staff who visit placement sites during influenza season must be vaccinated with the current southern hemisphere vaccine.

According to NSW Health Policy Influenza Season is defined as running from “1 June to 30 September, inclusive, unless another period is determined by the Chief Health Officer based on seasonal influenza epidemiology or the appearance of a novel influenza strain.”

What is accepted evidence of influenza vaccination?

NSW Health accepts the following evidence for receiving FluVax:

  • Australian Immunisation Register Vaccination Summary;
  • Patient Immunisation Summary/History (must be on doctor’s official letterhead);
  • Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Consent Form signed by HNELDH staff health and well-being nurse;
  • Staff Health Immunisation Summary (NSW Health staff only);
  • Completed and signed Vaccination Record Card for Health Care Workers and Students.
  • Record of evidence of influenza vaccination from a pharmacist, which includes the following:
  1. Full name of person receiving the vaccination
  2. Date of birth
  3. Brand/Batch number of vaccine
  4. How and site administered
  5. Name of Pharmacist administering the vaccine
  6. Provider number
  7. Signature and date vaccination given
  8. Name of the pharmacy and contact details

Vaccination Record Card for Health Care Workers and Students

In order to protect yourself and your patients, NSW Health have determined that you need to be immunised against a range of specified diseases.

The NSW Health Occupational Assessment, Screening and Vaccination Against Specified Infectious Diseases policy indicates must be protected from the following diseases

  • Diphtheria, tetanus, acellular pertussis (whooping cough) (adult dose of dTpa vaccine)
  • Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)
  • Varicella (chickenpox)
  • Hepatitis B (Hep B)

You may need to provide evidence both of the administration of a vaccine and of a positive response to the vaccine (e.g. serology report). Details can be found on the document Appendix 4 Checklist: Evidence required from Category A Applicants (PDF page 41 - 42).

Evidence of immunisation must be submitted on a Vaccination Record Card for Health Care Workers and Students (Red Card). These are available from your Placement Contact. Red Cards must be completed, signed and stamped by a doctor or authorised nurse immuniser.

What is the Hep B immunisation Schedule?

Adult Hep B vaccination requires a course of 3 spaced injections. The various Hep B Immunisation Schedules are published in The Australian Immunisation Handbook. The minimum recommended schedule is 0, 1 and 4 months. Between 4-8 weeks after the 3rd dose you need to get a serology test done to show that the vaccine worked.

What if my doctor can’t find evidence that I have received my hepatitis B vaccinations?

Where a record of vaccination is not available and cannot be reasonably obtained, you can complete and submit Appendix 9 Hepatitis B Statutory Declaration (PDF page 49). The statutory declaration should include details on where and when the vaccination course was administered, the vaccination schedule and why a vaccination record cannot be provided. NSW Health staff will determine where this is acceptable evidence.

What if I am not immune?

There a number of scenarios where you may not be immune to the specified diseases, you may:

  • be a vaccine non-responder (you have had the required immunisations but serology indicates you do not have immunity)
  • be unable to receive immunisation (e.g. allergic to a vaccine, pregnant)
  • have immunosuppression

This does not mean that you will be excluded from attending placements.

You need to connect with Program Placement Coordinator and in conjunction with NSW Health, your situation will be assessed and in most cases a plan will be put in place to facilitate a placement experience which ensures your own and public safety.

What if I have only completed some of my immunisations?

Some students will need to go on placement before they have finished their full Hep B course. Where only partial vaccination has been undertaken for Hep B (you must have had at least the first dose) you may be eligible for Temporary Verification. This means that you should still submit your documents to NSW Health in order to attend placements.

All other specified diseases require full vaccination prior to clinical placement.

Temporary Verification lasts for 6 months and you can only receive it once. This means that you need to make sure that you finish your full course before it expires. NSW Health Policy states that you need to finish the vaccination schedule and submit your evidence within 12 months of starting your degree.

What if I do not have or disagree with immunisation?

Health facilities within Australia have the right to exclude anyone from their premises if they are considered to present a risk to their patients/clients. This includes any persons without proper immunity.

It is important to understand that being awarded a health professional degree is dependent upon satisfactorily completing and passing all academic and clinical components of the program. If you cannot complete the placement component then you cannot graduate from your chosen degree.

If you feel strongly about not undertaking immunisation you should consult with your Program Convenor who can help direct you to another rewarding program that does not include a clinical component.

ALL students must undergo a NSW Working with Children Check – Individual and be issued with a NSW Working with Children Check clearance number prior to undertaking any professional experience placement or observation placement.  The NSW Working with Children Check is required to comply with the following:

  • NSW Government Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012; and
  • Child Protection (Working with Children) Regulation 2013; and
  • Child Protection (Working with Children) Amendment (Statutory Review) Act 2018

The NSW Working with Children Check is free for Volunteers and is valid for five years. University students undertaking professional experience placements are classified as Volunteers for the purpose of the check.

Please follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Apply for a NSW Working with Children Check (WWCC).

    Students who hold a current NSW Working with Children Check clearance for paid employment or for other voluntary purposes do not need to apply for the check again. Please go to step two.

    Students who do not hold a current NSW Working with Children check (volunteer or employment) clearance should:
    • Complete the online NSW Working with Children Check – Individual application available from the NSW Government, Office of the Children's Guardian web site and receive a NSW Working with Children Check Application number.
    • Go to any Service NSW Centre with your NSW Working with Children Check Application number and emailed receipt and provide the necessary Proof of Identity documentation to finalise your application. 
      Applications are usually completed within days but can take up to 28 working days to complete.
  2. Record your NSW Working with Children Check clearance number and expiry date on the SONIA placement system. 

    Log onto the SONIA placement system using your university issued username and password.
    Go to the SONIA Checks page, locate the NSW Working with Children Check and record your NSW Working with Children Check clearance number and issue date.

Please note that the Professional Experience Unit will check with the NSW Government, Office of the Children's Guardian to confirm the validity of the NSW Working with Children Check information provided.

Students will be required to provide their NSW Working with Children Check clearance information to the placement site supervisor at least one week prior to commencing any professional experience activity. The placement site may confirm the validity of the check with the NSW Government, Office of the Children's Guardian.

Tuberculosis (TB) Assessment

You must submit your completed NSW Health Appendix 7: Tuberculosis (TB) Assessment Tool (PDF page 46-47) as part of your initial verification submission to NSW Health.

However if your first NSW Health placement is more than 4 months after this submission, NSW Health requires you to submit a new NSW Health Appendix 7: Tuberculosis (TB) Assessment Tool (PDF page 46-47).

What if I have lived in a country with a high incidence of TB?

Countries considered to have a high incidence of TB can be found here: https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/tuberculosis/Pages/high-incidence-countries.aspx.

If you have lived in one or more of these countries, this does not mean that you will be excluded from placement, however additional testing may be required.

You need to submit the NSW Health Appendix 7: Tuberculosis (TB) Assessment Tool (PDF page 46-47) to NSW Health and wait for their response. If it is determined that you require further screening, you will be contacted by NSW Health with instructions. Please don't book a screening yourself as you may not require it.

What if I travel to a country with a high incidence of TB?

Countries considered to have a high incidence of TB can be found here: https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/tuberculosis/Pages/high-incidence-countries.aspx.

If you have traveled or resided in any of the above countries for a total of 3 months or longer since you were initially verified, then you need to submit a new NSW Health Appendix 7: Tuberculosis (TB) Assessment Tool (PDF page 46-47). This 3 months can be spent on a single trip or be the total time spent in multiple countries or across multiple trips.

This does not mean that you will be excluded from placement, however additional testing may be required. You need to submit the new NSW Health Appendix 7: Tuberculosis (TB) Assessment Tool (PDF page 46-47) to NSW Health and wait for their response. If it is determined that you require further screening, you will be contacted by NSW Health with instructions. Please don't book a screening yourself as you may not require it.

Submitting your documents Important information on submitting your documents to NSW Health

Mandatory training

In 2017, NSW Health introduced five Mandatory Training Modules, which all students undertaking healthcare placements in NSW Health facilities must complete.

These include:

  • Introduction to Work, Health and Safety
  • Hazardous Manual Tasks
  • Privacy Module 1 – Know your Boundaries
  • Hand Hygiene
  • Management of the deteriorating patient (Between the Flags – Tier 1: Awareness, Charts and Escalation)

14 days before your first NSW Health placement you will receive an email from NSW Health containing your logon ID and password, and directions to locate the modules. You should complete the training before day 1 of placement.

The logon is also used to log into a variety of NSW Health systems during your placement. These are specific to each venue and you will be provided details by venue staff.

The logon will last for the duration of your NSW Health placement and be deactivated 14 days after the end of the placement. The same logon will be reactivated 14 days before any subsequent placement.

For additional information see: 

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.