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NMC reopens COVID-19 temporary register for overseas nurses

Nursing and Midwifery Council reopens COVID-19 temporary register to overseas nurses as NHS England chief tells employers to ramp up international recruitment

Nursing and Midwifery Council reopens COVID-19 temporary register to overseas nurses as NHS England chief tells employers to ramp up international recruitment

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has reopened the COVID-19 temporary register to overseas recruits in a bid to ease pressures on staff and ‘rapidly expand the workforce’.

Employers can now nominate internationally trained nurses who are not yet on the permanent NMC register to join the temporary register.

Nurse regulator says measured approach enables rapid workforce expansion to protect public

NMC chief executive Andrea Sutcliffe said the regulator wanted to take immediate action to ease staff shortages as Omicron puts services under increasingly severe pressure.

‘Reopening the temporary register to internationally trained

Nursing and Midwifery Council reopens COVID-19 temporary register to overseas nurses as NHS England chief tells employers to ramp up international recruitment

The Nursing and Midwifery Council has reopened the temporary register for overseas nurses in a bid to ease staff shortages during COVID-19
Picture: iStock

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has reopened the COVID-19 temporary register to overseas recruits in a bid to ease pressures on staff and ‘rapidly expand the workforce’.

Employers can now nominate internationally trained nurses who are not yet on the permanent NMC register to join the temporary register.

Nurse regulator says measured approach enables rapid workforce expansion to protect public

NMC chief executive Andrea Sutcliffe said the regulator wanted to take immediate action to ease staff shortages as Omicron puts services under increasingly severe pressure.

‘Reopening the temporary register to internationally trained nurses is an immediate step we can take to help,’ she said.

‘We’ve made this decision carefully. We feel we’ve taken a measured approach that enables a rapid workforce expansion, and the right assurance that people are suitable to practise during this emergency to protect the public.’

Nearly 19,000 NHS staff were absent for COVID-19-related reasons on 19 December, according to the latest figures from NHS England, up 54% from the previous week.

The move comes as NHS bosses were told to ramp up their recruitment of international nurses by NHS England chief executive Amanda Pritchard. They were also told to make plans to secure safe staffing for the next three months.

The temporary register was launched by the NMC as the pandemic hit the UK in March 2020, with latest figures showing 13,665 nurses joined between then and September 2021, of which 568 were from overseas.

NMC will start reviewing nominations from trusts from next week

It was closed to international recruits in July 2021 as the COVID-19 situation in the UK stabilised, but was officially reopened on 22 December. Those eligible must be nominated by an NHS employer, who will need to assure the NMC that nurses are fit, proper and suitably experienced to work in the emergency.

Nominees will also need sufficient English, no health conditions or disabilities that stop them from providing safe care, and employers must have no concerns about the nominee’s character. They’ll be required to work under the supervision of a registered nurse or healthcare professional on the permanent register.

The NMC confirmed it will start reviewing nominations from trusts from next week and will be actively contacting people to invite them to join the temporary register.


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