Dentists


Dentists in New Zealand work in a range of settings from private practices to public hospitals, schools and community dental services. When looking for work in New Zealand, you may find that there are more opportunities in rural areas. Competition is often highest in Auckland. 
 

Scope of Practice for General Dental Practice

 
“The Dental Council of New Zealand defines the practice of dentistry as the maintenance of health through the assessment, diagnosis, management, treatment and prevention of any disease, disorder or condition of the orofacial complex and associated structures within the scope of the practitioner’s approved education, training and competence.”
 
For more information, see the Dental Council's website.
 

1. Registration

 
Dentists are required by law to be registered by the Dental Council of New Zealand and to hold a current Annual Practising Certificate. In order to work in New Zealand as a dentist – or any other oral health practitioner – your qualifications and experience must be assessed by the Dental Council.
 
Check out our flow chart and see below for more information on the registration process.
 

Applicants from Australia

 
If you are registered in Australia, you are entitled to seek registration in New Zealand under the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Act (TTMRA).
 
You will need to send a completed “ELIG004” application form to the Dental Council, with the required fees and documentation. This form can be downloaded from the Dental Council’s website. You are also expected to read the New Zealand Conditions of Practice Resource Book.
 
You application will be individually considered. If the Council agrees that you are eligible to apply for registration under the TTMRA, you will be issued with an eligibility letter. You must then complete a registration form, which will be provided with your letter.
 

Overseas Applicants with Prescribed Qualifications

 
If you hold a prescribed qualification that you completed outside of New Zealand, the first thing you need to do is to apply for eligibility to register. To do this, you need to complete “Form ELIG005”, which can be downloaded from the Dental Council’s website. You must return this form, along with the required fees and three professional references to the Dental Council. You are also expected to read the New Zealand Conditions of Practice Resource Book.
Your application will be individually considered. If the Council agrees that you are eligible to apply for registration you will be issued with an eligibility letter. You must then complete a registration form, which will be provided with your letter.
 
You will be required to sit the English examination even if your education was conducted in English and you have worked in an English speaking country for the last five years.
For more information, see the Dental Council's website.

Overseas Applicants with Non-Prescribed Qualifications

 
If you have a non-prescribed qualification, you may apply to enter the New Zealand Dentist Registration Examinations (NZDREX) pathway.
The NZDREX includes both written and clinical examinations. For more information on this process, please see the Dental Council’s website.
You will be required to sit the English examination even if your education was conducted in English and you have worked in an English speaking country for the last five years.

2. Job Offer

 
After you have gained registration with the Dental Council, you are eligible to work in New Zealand. You will find jobs listed on the national health job website.
 

3. Work Visa

 
To be eligible to work in New Zealand, you will need a work visa. You can apply for work visas from Immigration New Zealand. If you are an Australian national, you do not need to apply for a work visa.  
 
Got a question? Check out our forum to see if your question has already been answered or contact us directly.

 

  

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