The UK Government has introduced emergency legislation which lets us temporarily register nursing and midwifery professionals who want to support the response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

You may be eligible to apply to join the temporary if you were registered with us before and you left the permanent register after 1 March 2015.

You don't have to pay a registration fee or meet our revalidation requirements to join. You can also opt-out at any time.

How to join the temporary register

The Covid-19 temporary register is currently only open to people who left our permanent register between 1 March 2015 and 30 June 2021.

Join the Covid-19 temporary register

Depending on when you left the permanent register, you may have conditions of practice on your temporary registration. 

Read more about working while on the Covid-19 temporary register.

Can I join the temporary register if I lapsed my registration recently?

We recognise that professionals who have recently left our register may want to come back to help support the workforce response to Covid-19 and in particular with the rollout of any vaccine. We want to support them to do this.

While we’re encouraging nurses and midwives to rejoin the permanent register where they can, we recognise that some people may want to support the emergency response in the short term. We also know that some people may not be able to rejoin the permanent register as quickly (particularly if they were due to revalidate).

That’s why we’ve opened the Covid-19 temporary register up to those who left our permanent register recently up until 30 June 2021.

If you're an overseas candidate

Now that our facilities to enable overseas candidates to join our permanent register are fully functioning, we're no longer accepting overseas nurses onto the temporary register.

If you’re an overseas candidate and you’re already on the temporary register, this does not affect you – you can remain on the temporary register until you have completed your permanent registration.

We will continue to closely monitor the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on the workforce.

Find out more about:

Closing the temporary register

Temporary registration is separate from full registration and will come to end when the temporary register closes.

The emergency legislation sets out that this will be when the Secretary of State notifies us that the emergency situation has ended. We're working with the government to ensure the notice period for these changes is as long as possible.


In March 2020, we opened our Covid-19 temporary register and invited different groups to join one at a time to build up the register in a safe and measured way. These groups were:

  • Nurses and midwives who left our permanent register between 1 March 2017 and 29 February 2020
  • Overseas candidates who had completed all parts of their NMC registration process except their OSCE
  • Nurses and midwives who left our permanent register between 1 March 2015 and 28 February 2017

In light of government advice, we decided not to proactively invite people who left our register due to ill-health, or people aged 70 or over, to join the temporary register. However, these people are still able to apply to join if they’re eligible and feel able to practise. 

After closely monitoring workforce requirements and progression of the pandemic with our partners, we decided not to open up the temporary register to nursing students.

Read our Covid-19 emergency temporary registration policy and our joint statements on expanding the nursing and midwifery workforce for more background.

Answering your questions

Why have I received an equality and diversity survey?

We’re asking people on the temporary register to complete a diversity survey. Collecting this information helps us to meet our legal responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010. You can read more about why collect this information in our privacy notice.

You may have received a request from ‘’ . This message is authentic and has been sent by the NMC.

Are all nurses and midwives eligible to join the Covid-19 temporary register?

To ensure we build up the Covid-19 temporary register in a safe and measured way, we will be only allowing groups of people that we determine to be fit, proper and suitably experienced to join the register in a certain order.

Find out who can join the temporary register on our Covid-19 temporary registration page.

If I join the Covid-19 temporary register, will I be working under conditions of practice?

You will be working under conditions of practice if:

  • you left the permanent register between 1 March 2015 and 31 January 2018, or
  • you're an overseas candidate who meets the requirements for temporary registration.

Find out more about these conditions of practice.

Do I need to pay a fee or meet any revalidation requirements to join the Covid-19 temporary register?

No, our normal registration and revalidation requirements will not apply to those joining the Covid-19 temporary register. You do not need to pay a registration fee to join the Covid-19 temporary register.

What indemnity cover / insurance do I need to have to work?

Please speak to your employer about what arrangements will be in place for indemnity cover. The government is ensuring that legal protections will be in place for those who take part in work as part of the Covid-19 response.

Where will I work?

Once you complete our online temporary registration form, we'll check this and let you know when we have added you to the Covid-19 temporary register.

We'll then make your details available to those leading the UK’s health and care services who are co-ordinating and planning how best to deploy the emergency workforce.

If they need your support, they’ll contact you directly on the email address that you give us to see if you want to work.

What protection will I have from catching Covid-19 if I go to work?

Please follow the most recent government advice relating to keeping well during this period and discuss this with your employer.

What if I want to join the Covid-19 temporary register, but I'm worried about my own health and well being?

You must give due consideration to your health and well being before opting in to be on the Covid-19 temporary register. Please refer to the most recent government guidance when making your decision. It may be possible that there are support and advice roles that you could be involved in. Please speak with your employer.

Will my previous post-registration / SCPHN qualifications still stand?

No, your previous post-registration qualifications will not stand if you are on the temporary register. This includes any previous prescribing qualification you may have held.

What would happen to me if any questions were raised about my competency or fitness to practise, after I started work?

These would not be dealt with by way of any FtP proceedings, but where there were justifiable concerns the Registrar would have the power to remove you from the temporary register.

Will joining the temporary register affect my pension or benefits?

You can get advice on this from the Department for Work and Pensions.

What would I need to do to return to the permanent register?

At any time during or after your temporary registration, you can apply for readmission to our permanent register in line with our return to practice (RtP) standards and readmission process. You can only do this if you have previously been on our permanent register.

Any hours you have practised on the temporary register will count as practice hours needed for readmission to the register (450 hours over three years or 750 hours over five years).

Find out more

If I am on a Return to Practice (RTP) course, what impact will joining the temporary register have on completing my programme?

If you have been off our permanent register for less than five years, you may opt in to join our temporary register. If you are currently on an RTP course you can defer your course and return at a later date. Your education institution should be able to advise you whether they will grant you Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for the hours you complete in practice while on the temporary register.

Alternatively if the hours you have practised on the temporary register fulfil the criteria for admission (450 hours over three years or 750 hours over five years) then you could apply for readmission.

Find out more