WA Health Assistants in Nursing

An Assistant in Nursing (AIN) is a non-regulated healthcare worker, who works under the direction of a nurse or midwife to assist in the delivery of patient care in the acute care environment. AINs are a complementary workforce and not a substitute for the number of nurses or midwives employed under current workplace arrangements.

Acute care is provided in hospitals that deliver shorter term treatment for severe illness, following surgery, or as a result of injury. As an AIN, you always work under the direction of a nurse or midwife.

WA Health have a mandatory policy for the employment of AINs which underpins a key principle within the Clinical Governance, Safety and Quality Policy Framework ensuring staff have the right qualification and skills to provide safe, high quality health care; and to foster a culture of openness, collaboration and continuous improvement. See the AIN Policy.

Some of the duties that an AIN can undertake may include:

  • helping staff keep patients safe by observing those who might be restless or confused
  • assisting patients to get in and out of bed/chairs and to mobilise within the ward environment
  • assisting patients with their meal set up and feeding
  • assisting with hygiene needs such as with showering, shaving and mouth care
  • supporting the ward team by answering patient call bells and ward telephones
  • general ward restocking, tidying and maintaining cleanliness
  • patient escort or companionship as deemed appropriate by the nurse or midwife.

AINs can work in the nursing and maternity setting. Both have a separate list of duties they are able to undertake:

There are now two ways you can access employment opportunities as an AIN within WA Health – as an AIN (student) or as an AIN (Non-student).

AIN (Student)

  1. Student nurses may be engaged/employed by Health Service Providers (HSPs) to support the nursing and midwifery workforce while they complete their undergraduate studies.

To be eligible, student nurses/midwives must have completed a minimum

  • 50% of their Bachelor’s degree and possess academic good standing
  • 66% (Stage 2) of the Diploma of Nursing and possess academic good standing.

AIN (Non-student)

  1. To work as an AIN across the metropolitan and country health setting, evidence of successful completion of the nationally recognised qualification, Certificate III in Health Services Assistance-Acute Care is required.
  2. The WA Country Health Service have a proviso, where an AIN employee who works only in a WACHS aged care setting may satisfy qualification requirements by holding a Certificate III in Individual Support-Ageing or Certificate III Aged Care (superseded by Certificate III in Individual Support-Ageing in 2015).
    Noting that these proviso qualifications do not satisfy the requirement to work in the acute care setting.

If you would like to find out how to undertake either the Certificate III in Health Services Assistance-Acute Care or Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) qualification, please contact the Training Providers directly:

Employment opportunities

Health services accept online applications via recruitment pools – please search 'Assistant in Nursing' or 'AIN' on the jobs board.

Alternatively you can contact NurseWest to enquire about a casual position by emailing nursewestrecruitment@health.wa.gov.au. Please include:

  • a cover letter outlining your intentions for work with NurseWest
  • your current curriculum vitae (CV)
  • email addresses of two referees who you have worked with in the past three years. They must be of senior delegation such as your line manager and/or clinical supervisor.

If you decide you are ready to go further and study to become a registered nurse or a midwife, this qualification will also allow you to get paid to work as an Assistant in Nursing while you study.

Last reviewed: 15-09-2022
Produced by

Chief Nursing and Midwifery Office