The Australian Private Hospitals Association (APHA) has welcomed the announcement from home affairs minister Clare O’Neill that the skilled migration system will be simplified.
Last week, the minister issued a draft Australian Migration Strategy that includes three new pathways for temporary skilled migrants.
"The first pathway is a fast, simple route for specialised, highly skilled workers we need to drive innovation in our economy, and to help us build the jobs of the future," said the minister.
"The second is a mainstream temporary skilled pathway to bring in the core skills we need. For this stream, we would focus on proper, evidence-based assessments of skills needs, rather than the current outdated approaches that everyone agrees are not working.
"The third stream relates to our essential industries."
CEO Michael Roff said, “Australia is lagging behind in what it offers the workers we really need. For example, Canada rapidly moved to offer health workers easy pathways to residency as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, France and the UK have made similar arrangements.
"We are on the backfoot and will have to catch up, just opening up migration again has not been enough to entice people here.
“It is pleasing to hear the Minister reference this and talk about how we can improve the infrastructure to support migrants when they come to Australia.
“In the private hospital sector alone there is a shortage of 8,000 nurses and we continue to compete globally for a health workforce. Having measures in place that will ensure an easy pathway to residency in Australia is a very welcome move.”
Mr Roff said removing Labour Market Testing was also a key recommendation the APHA hag put to the Government, which will streamline recruitment for overseas-based workers. “We look forward working with the Government as they develop their final plan in the coming months,” he added.