How to work as a Nurse in UK: A Complete Guide

Choosing to work as a nurse in UK is one that is fraught with many options. Depending on your specialization, there is work for you. You can even choose to work on a short-term or long-term basis. All of these are possible because of the high demand for nursing professionals in the United Kingdom. In this article, you will discover everything you need to know about how to work as a nurse in UK, especially if you are an expat nurse.

Registration On How to work as a Nurse in UK

First, you must know that the steps to register to work as a nurse in the UK who was trained outside the EU/EEA are different from those who had their nursing training in a non-member country of the EU/EEA.

How to work as a Nurse in UK

For those nurses trained outside the European Union, to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council, UK, you must complete an online self-assessment form to prove their eligibility to apply. The Nursing and Midwifery Council in the United Kingdom, amongst many other things, do these to ascertain that the applicant can have a safe and effective nursing practice.

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The NMC would also evaluate the training, qualification, and experience of the applicant to confirm if they meet their standards. For instance, your English proficiency would be assessed. Therefore, it is vital that you pass the IELTS or OET. For the academic IELTS, a 6.5 in writing and a 7 in the other areas would be fine. But, if you took the OET, C+ in writing and B in the other areas would give you a good chance.

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You can achieve these cutoff marks across two settings if you sit for the tests within six months of each other and are tested in all four skills simultaneously. When you take the IELTS test, make sure all your scores are above 6.5. And, for the OET, ensure all your grades in both settings are above grade C+. Mind you; these test scores are valid for only two years.

Who are eligible to register On how to work as a nurse in UK?

Nurses, Midwives, and Specialist Community Public Health Nurses (SCPHN) who had their training outside any of the EU/EEA member countries. Under the nursing category, four fields of nursing practice are available. They are: adult nursing, mental health nursing, learning disabilities nursing, and children’s nursing.

UK Nurses Processing Time

The NMC also conducts a Computer Based Test for those who wish to work as nurses in the UK. Multiple test centers are scattered worldwide where these tests can be written. For those who want to work as nurses in the UK and have passed the NMC self-assessment eligibility test, you will have to ace this exam, which comprises about 120 multiple-choice questions.

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The applicants have a deadline of six months to pass the first part of this competence test successfully. In addition to the specified time, these applicants have a maximum of two attempts to pass this CBT. By two attempts, we mean both the first sitting and resit. This must happen within a space of 28 days.

If applicants fail these CBTs after these two attempts, they will have to wait another two months before reapplying for registration. The results are usually sent to candidates via their emails within 48 hours of taking the examination. Also, you can’t write the CBT if the exam fees aren’t paid in full. This CBT is only valid for two years.

The NMC body advises that candidates begin the assessment stage as quickly as possible and, afterward, give the necessary documentation as soon they pass the CBT. This is because the NMC’s objective is to tidy up the application within 28 days, after which the required documents have been provided.

Objective Structured Clinical Examination

Remember that there are two exams those who want to work as a nurse in the UK have to pass. One is the CBT; the other is the OSCE, also known as Objective Structured Clinical Examination. This particular examination can only be taken in the UK. Applicants must take this exam within two years of passing the CBT.

The OSCE gives registered nurses and midwives patient scenarios they are likely to encounter in a clinical setting. Once you pass this exam, you will receive an NMC Personal Identification Number from the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

If the applicant is unsuccessful on the first try, the person must wait ten working days before the exam can be written again. If another failure is recorded upon the second effort at writing the OSCE, the applicant has to wait another three months from the date of the second attempt. Only then are they eligible to write the OSCE for the second time.

Should the applicant be unsuccessful at all three attempts, then their application is closed. They can only open it again after a minimum of six months. Mind you, OSCE results are usually emailed to the applicants within five working days after taking the examination.

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Certificate of Sponsorship

Before you can work as a nurse in the UK, you need a Certificate of Sponsorship (COS). This certificate is valid for three years, after which you can be sponsored again. After living in the UK for at least five years, you can apply for permanent residency.

How Much Would You be Paid if You Work as a Nurse in UK?

For any registered nurse in the UK, the standard pay remains £24,907 per annum. Additional skills like practice nurses, geriatrics, and even nurse case managers can increase your salary. Fully qualified nurses start with £22,128, rising to £28,746. Generally, it must be said that a location like London could mean a higher salary.

Nurses with experience and a team leader on Band 6 have their salaries shot from £26,255 to as high as £35,577. And for more senior roles like nurses matrons and nurse consultants range from £31,696 to £69,168.

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Nothing beats having a fulfilled nursing career and enjoying all the other benefits accrued. This is what this article was all about.

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