About ACN

Shaping Health, Advancing Nursing

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About Australian College of Nursing

The Australian College of Nursing is the peak professional body and leader of the nursing profession. We are a for-purpose organisation committed to our mission of Shaping Health, Advancing Nursing.

We support nurses to uphold the highest possible standards of integrity, clinical expertise, ethical conduct, and professionalism through our six pillars of Education, Leadership, Community, Social Impact, Advocacy and Policy.

We are the Australian member of the International Council of Nurses headquartered in Geneva in collaboration with the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF).

Our community in numbers

In 2022-2023, we had over…


potential media audience reach


delegates welcomed to ACN events


CPD modules completed

> 245

represented the nursing profession to
Government and key stakeholders


enrolments for the Government-funded
COVID-19 vaccination training program


scholarships awarded

Our purpose

In a world where nurses are trusted, specialised and valuable, our purpose is strong.

At ACN, we believe:


We can build a better future for nursing


Being a nurse means being a leader


We are powerful individually and unstoppable together

Voices of our community

ACN has achieved outstanding results through securing educational credibility, empowering nurse leadership, building networks and raising the profile of the organisation as a professional and powerful advocacy voice for the profession. We continue to grow our membership and influence.

Our strategic pillars



We will advocate for the issues that matter to our profession and the health of all Australians to make real and lasting change for today and generations to come.



We will support an engaged and contributing community of nurses – at all stages and levels of their career – inclusive of a strong band of supporters, volunteers, health professionals, media and government.



We will train, educate, inspire and mentor nurses, with constant access to world-class information, research and evidence, and foster the intellectual rigour required of professionals making health-care decisions.



We will prepare nurses to lead. We will facilitate opportunities for nurses to make a difference and grow, to expand career options and horizons to reach their utmost potential.



We will demonstrate how health and professional care can be enhanced through the expertise and experience of nurses via developing, debating, responding, publishing, promoting and commissioning good policy.


Social Impact

We are inclusive and here for all nurses and their place in society. We will actively strive to develop respect and appreciation for nurses and improve the beneficial impact nurses have on our society and to protect the environment we all share.

Our people

David Plunkett

Adjunct Professor David Plunkett FACN GAICD MBA RN

Leanne Boyd

Emeritus Professor Leanne Boyd FACN
Interim Chief Executive Officer

Our ways of being

We believe that we are powerful individually and unstoppable together.



We spot opportunities and make things happen


We listen, try new things and embrace change


We rise to the challenge and see things through


We act today to create a better tomorrow

Our ways of working

We know that if we act in the following ways, we are doing our best to help achieve our strategic directions and purpose.


Exceptional experiences

We see every interaction, both internal and external, as an opportunity to create magical moments.

Informed decisions

We follow our think plan share decide model. Sharing intelligence and develop quality thinking as we go.

Hitting targets

We always know where the scoreboard is, know how we we’re contributing and make sure we hit the mark.

Embrace feedback

We believe feedback is the fuel for progress. We seek it. We are generous with it. We thrive on it.

Our members

The Australian College of Nursing is a member-based organisation with corporate and individual membership reaching over 150,000 people across all Australian states and territories. However, our reach and scope is significantly greater. We actively advocate to government for better policy and education and seek support from the media to highlight the country’s largest clinical profession.

Our membership consists of clinical nurse experts, organisational leaders, academics, educators, and researchers, as well as early and mid-career nurses looking to move into leadership roles within the profession.

Our social impact

ACN supports a number of initiatives in health care which align with our values for health equality for all. We advocate for nurses and the nursing profession across the globe, and particularly in Australia.

ACN is a national body that drives change to enhance the delivery of health services to the Australian community. We are an organisation not afraid to address the issues affecting the nursing profession or Australia’s health care systems.

Work at ACN

At ACN, our strength lies within our people. Our passionate and high-performing team, comprised of experts in their respective fields, operates from offices in Sydney and Canberra. As a purpose-driven organisation, we take pride in offering our employees the opportunity to engage in meaningful work that truly makes a difference. We are unapologetically ambitious, dedicated to working as hard as the nurses we proudly represent, and committed to fostering an environment that encourages continuous growth and learning.

Customer experience

As the national professional organisation for all nurses in Australia we are privileged to represent and support thousands of nurses around the country, including our valued Fellows, Members, students, scholars, and Affiliates. Our Customer Experience Charter outlines our unwavering commitment to providing exceptional experiences to those who dedicate their lives to caring for others.

Our history

ACN and its predecessor organisations have had a rich history of raising the status and profile of nursing, advocating for the profession and offering high-quality postgraduate education for nearly 75 years.

Year in Review

ACN’s annual Year in Review publication celebrates the breadth and diversity of our ACN Tribe and reflects on our many milestones and achievements, from advocating for our profession, to preparing nurse leaders and educating and inspiring nurses.

We’re here for nurses

The Australian College of Nursing (ACN) Foundation is dedicated to ensuring Australian nurses have access to educational, research, advocacy and leadership opportunities that will keep them highly skilled and at the cutting edge of health care delivery.

The ACN Foundation is able to support Australian nurses and the profession in achieving the highest level of nursing excellence thanks to the generous support of corporations, individuals and private Trusts and Foundations.

Join us in supporting nurses by making a donation to the ACN Foundation today.

Get in touch

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To tell us about your experience, offer suggestions, or address any issues, please use our Customer Feedback Form.

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