28th June 2016

Guidance for Overseas Nurse to Practice in the UK

Guidance for Overseas Nurse to Practice in the UK


Overseas nurse who want to work as a nurse or midwife in the UK must get registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), which is the regulatory body of nursing and midwifery in the UK.

In October 2014, a new system was introduced for overseas nurse to enter in the NMC register. The new system involves only route to registration for all nurses who are trained outside the UK which consist 2-part application process: a computer-based multiple-choice examination and a practical objective structured clinical examination (OSCE). The computer based multiple choice examination is accessible in many countries around the world but OSCE is held only in the UK.  

Below are step-by-step guidance for overseas nurse to get register with the NMC.

  • Step-1 : Eligibility Declaration

At first, you must complete an online form which will show that you meet the minimum requirement for your registration with the NMC. The requirement includes successful completion of a three year (or equivalent) undergraduate education and training programme, 12 month post-registration practice experience, International English Language Test (IELTS) score of 7.0 in all sections and a self-declaration of good health and character. If you have all the minimum requirement then you can begin the application process.

  • Step-2: Test of Competence

After the confirmation of your eligibility, you can sit for the computer-based examination in your home country as the first part of test of competence. The format of the test is a multiple choice which can be taken in test centers around the world. Once you successfully complete your test, the result will be passed on to the NMC and your application will be proceeded to the next stage. If you fail the test then you can re-apply after six months.

  • Step-3: Full Application

In this step, you will be required to upload documents and evidence through the online system to support your previous declaration. You also need to provide your ID, evidence of qualifications and prior registrations, and at least two employment references. At this stage you will need to pay an assessment fee.

  • Step-4: Assessment of Training and Experience

NMC examines the uploaded documents to determine if you are valid and had meet all the necessary requirement or not. If your documents are insufficient or incorrect, then NMC will contact you to provide the necessary documents within Six months.

Documents consist of:

  • a valid passport
  • birth certificate
  • certificate of your qualification
  • Registration certificate of your training from where you has practiced and/or been registered
  • References of minimum two employment
  • Good health and character declaration from occupational health department
  • a transcript from relevant nursing and midwifery training program
  • confirmation from applicable regulator which confirm you have no issues in fitness to practice
  • English transformation where necessary in the above documents
  • Step-5: OCSE

It is the second part of the test of competence which will evaluate your skills, knowledge and behaviors to fulfill the responsibilities as a nurse and midwife. The test is based on current UK pre-registration standards which expect you to establish safe and effective practice.  

The OCSE test is taken only in the UK at the University of Northampton. You can directly contact to the university when NMC approve you to take the OSCE.

  • Step-6: Admission

After the completion of all above steps, you will complete your final declaration and pay the registration fee which allow you to be on the NMC register. Generally, the cost for the entire process will be around £1,403 to £1,613.

iSpecialist Medical Recruitment is a medical recruitment agency which provide locum, temporary and permanent job for medical professionals in the UK. If you need any help with your NMC registration and medical recruitment, feel free to contact us.