Nursing and Midwifery Council

To work within the NHS as a nurse you will need to obtain your Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Registration. To obtain your NMC Registration you will need to evidence your English skills via IELTS or OET and then evidence your knowledge and skills via the CBT and OSCE exams. However, all the OSCE exam centres are located in the UK. Therefore, the Tier 2 visa process was amended back in 2015 to allow nurses to enter the UK prior to sitting at OSCE. International nurses can now work within the NHS as a pre-registered nurse/health care assistant for three-months before sitting the OSCE exam.

The only route to work as a nurse in the UK is through NMC registration. Registration with the NMC is through a two-part application process.

Part one – a computer-based test (CBT). This is a multiple-choice examination which is accessible in many countries around the world for applicants to access in their home countries.

Part two – a practical observed structured clinical examination (OSCE) which can be taken in three test centres across the UK (After you arrive in the UK)

Nurses trained outside of the UK must also meet the English language standards set by the NMC. This can be demonstrated: 

  • by successfully completing a language test such as the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or the Occupational English Test (OET).
  • through evidence that their pre-registration nursing programme was taught and examined in English and that at least 50% of the programme involved clinical interaction using English

IELTS is a universally recognised international test of English language proficiency. It measures the language ability of people who wish to study and/or work where English is the main language of communication. Those taking the IELTS need to achieve a minimum overall level of 7, although a level 6.5 in writing will be accepted alongside a level 7 in reading, listening and speaking. 

The OET is an international English language test designed specifically for the healthcare sector. It uses clinical scenarios and in the UK is an option for nurses, midwives and doctors.

It assesses the language communication skills of healthcare professionals who wish to register and practise in an English-speaking environment. Nurses taking the OET need to achieve a minimum of a level B. 


You can find out more about registering with the NMC (including the language competency requirements and relevant guidance) on the NMC website.

The next lap of the journey is to find a suitable job at a suitable location in the UK. We can help you to find a job in most National Health Service hospital trusts. We frequently update our list of hospitals with nursing opportunities.   Please register with us and we will get in touch with you as soon as we review your eligibility and qualification information. Once you have passed your CV and relevant copies of documents (IELTS/OET certificates/score sheets, NMC start of registration process-Screenshot, Passport copies) we will contact our hospitals and give you a list of hospitals and location and if you are happy with the hospital and location, we will arrange interviews and the hospitals will contact you directly and inform you about your interview details.

Please note that some hospitals/locations may take some time to progress with the recruitment process but we can advise you on hospitals where we can make the process quickly. 

 Please let us know if you want us to help you in preparing your CV. Once you are successful in the interview, you will be offered the job and the Hospital trust will issue a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). 

  Family Applications

Your family can come with you to the UK, if they’re classified as dependants.

A dependant is:

  • Your husband, wife or partner
  • Your child under the age of 18
  • Your child over the age of 18, but they are currently in the UK as a dependant

Similarly, to yourself, if your NHS hospital has not ticked maintenance, then your dependents must evidence that they can be supported whilst they are in the UK.

Each dependant must have £630 available to them whether they apply with you or separately at a later date. The evidence must show that it has been in your bank account or your dependant’s bank account for at least 90 days before the application.

Visa Fees

As all doctor and nurse jobs are on the shortage occupation list, the cost of your Tier 2 visa will be £464 for each person each year the CoS is valid for.

We will make all efforts to get all visa fees you paid in the process.

Make your application

To apply for your Tier 2 visa, you must do so online. You will need to have your fingerprints and photograph taken at a local visa and application centre (to receive your Biometric Residence Permit) as part of your application.

The UK Home Office is committed to sticking to their rules concerning UK visa process times, and only in exceptional circumstances will they take longer than the time given to respond to your application.

The Home Office states that you should get your decision within three weeks of attending your appointment at the visa application centre, where 1 week is 5 working days, if you have applied to work in the UK.