Career Pathways


A beginning perioperative nurse requires exposure to the perioperative environment to determine if they wish to move into this specialty area of nursing. Ways that this can be achieved are:

Undergraduate nurses:

Any undergraduate nurse interested in perioperative nursing should take the opportunity to undertake:

  • An elective in perioperative nursing if available
  • A specialty placement in the perioperative environment as one of their clinical placements
  • A patient follow though that incorporates all areas of the perioperative environment

Graduate nurses:

Explore graduate year programs that offer a clinical rotation in the perioperative environment including intraoperative, anaesthetics, post anaesthetic care unit (PACU) or the day surgery unit.

Registered Nurses and Enrolled Nurses:

The VPNG Introduction to Perioperative Nursing course is a 2 day course for nurses wishing to explore perioperative nursing.

Some hospitals offer a transition program in perioperative nursing that provides the opportunity to explore the role of the perioperative nurse in a supported program that incorporates clinical and theoretical learning. These programs are available for Registered Nurses and Enrolled Nurses. For details of hospitals that currently offer transition programs click here.

Furthermore, some hospitals offer staff from other areas, the opportunity to spend a ‘Professional Development’ day in the perioperative department.  You may apply for a Professional Development day via your current NUM and the NUM of the perioperative department.

Post Graduate Studies:

Post graduate studies are available at Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma and Masters level. Explore universities that offer perioperative programs and the criteria for enrolment

Perioperative Nurses:

The VPNG conduct education programs, conferences and study days for perioperative nurses.


VPNG Career Development Pathways:

Click here to download the poster

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The Victorian Perioperative Nurses Group acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the traditional owners of the land and acknowledges and pays respects to the Elders past, present and emerging.

VPNG is comitted to safe and inclusive workplaces, policies and services for people of LGBTIQ communities and their families.

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