Consultation on the English language requirements and process for registration with the NMC

This consultation has now closed.

From 1 June to 21 August 2015, we consulted on the English language requirements and process for registration with the NMC.

About the consultation

In November 2014, the UK government announced plans to give us powers to put in place language controls for European Economic Area (EEA) trained nurses and midwives in line with the revised European Directive on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications. The Department of Health consulted on the proposed amendments to our legislation and allowed us to change the statutory rules setting out our processes.

The consultation sought views on the processes that we will put in place for language controls for:

  • EEA-trained nurses and midwives who apply for registration
  • all nurses and midwives seeking readmission to our register following a lapse of registration
  • investigating concerns about the language competence of nurses and midwives on our register.


We received over 700 responses to our consultation. We analysed the responses and presented our findings to our Council.

After analysing the responses, we revised the draft and published final policy and guidance which was approved by our Council on 8 October 2015.

Consultation documents

The consultation document describes the proposed new approach and explains how it would be fair and proportionate. Annexe 1 sets out the draft guidance for EEA nurses and midwives providing evidence of English language competence. Annexe 2 sets out the proposed changes to our education, registration and registration appeals rules and our fitness to practise rules.