About the NMC
The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) regulates nurses and midwives in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. They set standards for nurses and midwives to meet in their working lives. Nurses and midwives must follow the NMC code of conduct, which states how they must work and behave. You can read more on the Code here.
To protect the public, the NMC set standards for education. This ensures nurses and midwives have the right skills and qualities when they start work. They keep a register of all nurses and midwives who have met these standards and have been accepted on to the register.
The NMC register has three parts:
- Specialist community public health nurses
Nurses are then split into four sub-sectors:
- Adult nursing
- Mental health nursing
- Learning disabilities nursing
- Children’s nursing
Registering with the NMC
You can apply to be on one or more of the above parts of the NMC register as long as you meet the standards. If you are a nurse, it is likely that you have trained as a nurse responsible for general care. As a result, you should apply for first level registration in the field of adult nursing. Once registered with the NMC, you can work in the National Health Service (NHS) or private healthcare sector.
For nurses and midwives trained outside of the UK there are specific processes to follow, and you will need to adhere to the following requirements:
- Education requirements
- Practice requirements
- Registration requirements, including a test of competence
- Face-to-face identity check
You must have completed at least ten years of school education before starting your post-secondary education in nursing.
Before applying for a role within the UK, you must have practised as a registered nurse for at least 12 months (full or part-time equivalent). The experience should be relevant to the vacancy you are applying for.
If you have been registered as a nurse for over 12 months, you must also be able to evidence that you have worked as a nurse for 450 hours or more within the last three years.
To register as a nurse in the UK, you must first hold a current registration license in the country where you are living, have been practising in or where you qualified.
If you completed comprehensive or general nurse training in your home country, you will only be able to apply for registration as a general adult nurse in the UK.
Submitting your application
You will need to submit your application on the NMC website. Firstly, complete a self-assessment of your eligibility and declare that you meet the minimum requirements, including good health and good character.
Following the eligibility assessment, you will need to undertake a competency test which is split into two parts.
Part one – is a computer-based test to check your theoretical practice-based knowledge. It is multiple choice and you will have two attempts at passing the test. To complete this section of the assessment you will need to evidence documents including a passport, birth certificate, qualifications and registration certificates. Please check with the NMC for the full list of documents.
Part two – this section assesses your clinical knowledge and can only be taken in the UK. The objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) will simulate a clinical environment and common patient scenario.
When you attend the OSCE test at the University of Northampton, you will be required to complete a face-to-face interview where you will be expected to present original identification documents.
You will not be registered or issued with an NMC PIN until you have met the criteria within this check. The NMC will be in contact with you to book your identity appointment.
The fees for the different stages of the application process can be seen below:
Application for nursing/midwifery £140
Part 1 test of competence (CBT) £130
Part 2 test of competence (OSCE) £992
Admission onto the register £153