Community Health Nurse

Job Description

A Community Health Nurse, also commonly referred to as a Child & Family Health Nurse, Paediatric Nurse or Public Health Nurse is responsible for the care of a group of patients within a facility, or for the care of a particular segment of the community, dependent on their area of employment.  Government departments and not-for-profit organisations are the most common employers of Community Nurses.  Community Health Nurses care for the health and wellbeing of the community who present with various conditions, however, they often focus on prevention rather than treatment of conditions.  Community Health Nurses also play an important role in delivering and participating in health education such as public health programs and initiatives with the aim of ensuring the community become aware of conditions impacting on health (such as communicable diseases and virus outbreaks) while promoting overall health and wellness.

Some areas in which Community Health Nurses can work include:

  • Schools
  • Early Childhood
  • Youth Services
  • Aged Care
  • Government Departments
  • Aboriginal Health Care Services 
  • Mental Health Facilities
  • Refugee Facilities
  • Volunteer Programs

To bcome a Community Health Nurse you will first need to be a Registered Nurse (RN).  Registered Nurses work as part of a multidisciplinary team alongside other skilled professionals including doctors, surgeons, specialists, therapists, specialty nurses, social workers and many others to provide ongoing patient care to people who are sick, disabled, injured or recovering from surgery. 

Registered nurses deliver primary health care predominantly in hospitals, clinics, assisted living facilities, aged care facilities, Government or military institutions, community or school settings, in the home or in outpatient facilities.

Some of the responsibilities of Nursing include:

  • Assessing, observing and speaking to patients
  • Planning and carrying out nursing care according to accepted nursing practices and standards
  • Monitoring the condition and health of patients and record their progress
  • Recording vital signs - temperature, blood pressure, heart rate and blood sugar
  • Drawing blood, urine samples, and other body fluids for lab work
  • Preparing patients for exams and treatment
  • Administering medications, monitoring patients for side effects and reactions
  • Providing pre-operative and post-operative care
  • Dressing wounds, providing interventions, treatments, therapies, medications
  • Assisting in medical procedures as needed
  • Consulting with other health professionals such as doctors
  • Taking part in health education and other health promotion activities
  • Educating patients and families about treatments, care and health
  • Providing emotional support to patients and relatives
  • Supervising and mentoring trainee nurses and students

You can specialise in other roles while working as a Nurse, undertaking further studies to obtain qualifications and specialise in a particular area of nursing.

Read about all other Specialty Nursing Roles here


To become a Community Nurse you must first become a Registered Nurse.  You may undertake further qualifications and training in the specialty of Community Nursing.  Community Nurses also bring practical experience in providing care through clinical knowledge, skill and expereince.  

In Australia, to become a Registered Nurse, you need to complete a 3-year Bachelor of Nursing, which is available at most Australian universities.  Alternatively, for students with previous tertiary qualifications, complete a two-year Master of Nursing (Graduate Entry) program.  Further study is essential if you are looking to take the next step in your career and advance in specialist nursing roles.  

All nurses must apply to the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA). Registration must be renewed annually.


  • Integrity
  • Interpersonal
  • Empathy
  • Acumen
  • Autonomy
  • Charismatic
  • Communicator
  • Compassion 
  • Devoted
  • Educated
  • Flexible
  • Perceptive
  • Procedural
  • Resilient
  • Self-Motivator
  • Team Player

Key Skills

  • AHPRA Registration
  • Nursing
  • Aged Care
  • Acute Care
  • AHPRA Scheduled Medicine Endorsement
  • Patient Care
  • CPR Certificate
  • Time Management
  • Care plans

Future Prospects

Registered Nurses can specialise in other roles, undertaking further studies to obtain qualifications and specialise in a particular area of nursing. 

There are also opportunities to progress your career into more senior roles such as;

Registered Nurses can specialise in other roles, undertaking further studies to obtain qualifications and specialise in a particular area of nursing.  Specialised Nursing Roles include: