Foreign Nurses

Can Foreign Nurses Work in the UK?

The UK has been facing a staffing crisis in the healthcare sector that has only worsened after the pandemic. One way to fill the gap in the workforce is by hiring foreign nurses to work in the UK. If you are a foreign nurse hoping to advance in your career, you would be wondering whether you can work in the UK. You will be pleased to know that foreign nurses can work in the UK. 

The National Health Service (NHS), the publicly funded healthcare system in the UK, relies on overseas nurses to fill the empty nursing spots in the country. However, moving to another country is never free of challenges. So, before you make the move, it is important to find out the requirements you will have to fulfill to work as a foreign nurse in the UK

Requirements for Foreign Nurses

If you are a foreign nurse who wishes to work in the UK, you will have to fulfill certain requirements and then register with NMC, the Nursing and Midwifery Council. But first, let’s take a look at the requirements. 

Be a Qualified Nurse

In order to work in the UK, you must have:

  • A nursing degree or diploma equivalent to a foundation degree level in the UK,  
  • One year of experience working as a nurse, and 
  • A registered nurse license. 

Be Proficient in English

You will also have to prove your English language skills in order to work in the UK. This can be done by clearing either IELTS or OET. 

  • You must clear Academic IELTS with a score of 6.5 in writing and a score of 7 in the remaining areas. OR
  • You must clear OET with a grade of C+ in writing and B in the remaining areas of the test. 

Complete NMC Self-Assessment

The next step will be to take the online NMC self-assessment test. The assessment is necessary to prove that you are eligible to apply for NMC registration. You will also have to confirm during the assessment that you are in good health and meet the good character and English language requirements. 

Clear The Test of Competence

Once NMC declares you fit to apply for the registration, you can take the Test of Competence. The test consists of the Computer Based Test (CBT) and Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). The purpose of the Test of Competence is to measure your knowledge and skill level as a nurse. You will have to pass both tests to pass the Test of Competence and become eligible to work in the UK as a foreign nurse. 

The type of test you will have to take will depend on the part of the NMC register you want to join. NMC has the following registers:

  • Adult Nurse or RNA
  • Mental Health Nurse or RNMH
  • Children’s Nurse or RNC
  • Learning Disabilities Nurse or RNLD

The CBT can be taken in multiple centres across the world and consists of 120 multiple-choice questions. The OSCE takes place after you have arrived in the UK. Employers provide a lot of support to nurses for the preparation of OSCE. 

Complete the Registration Process

As a last step, you will have to provide proof of health and character evidence. You will also have to provide a police clearance certificate and undergo a DBS check before you can be declared fit to work in the UK as a foreign nurse. Once all of your documents have been verified, you will be registered with the NMC as a nurse. After that, you can apply for a job and start working as a nurse. 

Tips for Foreign Nurses Moving to the UK

The process of moving to the UK as a foreign nurse can be a bit complex. However, you can make things easier for yourself by reaching out to the right people. You can join online forums of overseas nurses currently working in the UK to ask for guidance. Their experience will help you avoid unnecessary mistakes. 

It is also important to make sure that you apply for jobs that are not exploitative in nature. ESGO can help you find jobs with good working conditions and competitive pay. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you are a foreign nurse who wants to start working in the UK. 

About ESGO

ESGO provides quick and efficient healthcare staffing solutions. Since its establishment, ESGO has been dedicated towards linking skilled health professionals with reputable care homes across UK, thereby, becoming a trusted partner in the country’s healthcare industry. Our commitment goes beyond placements! We want to develop careers as well as carers’ lives while ensuring that the best patient care is provided through top level staffs in care homes.

At ESGO, we understand the unique challenges faced by care homes in sourcing qualified and compassionate healthcare staff. Partner with us to access a curated pool of top-tier nurses and carers ready to make a difference in your facility.

At ESGO, we’re committed to connecting outstanding healthcare professionals with top-tier care homes and facilities across the UK. If you’re ready to take the next step in your career with flexible, rewarding opportunities, apply today and join our vibrant community of care professionals.

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