NMC to consult on introducing language controls for EU trained nurses and midwives.

Published on 01 June 2015

We're consulting on new English language checks on nurses and midwives who trained in Europe

At its meeting in May, our Council gave the go ahead to consult on new English language checks on nurses and midwives who trained in Europe and wish to work in the UK.

Following recent changes to EU legislation, we are now consulting on our powers to require applicants to the register from the European Economic Area (EEA) to satisfy us that they have the necessary knowledge of English to practise safely and effectively in the UK.

Take part in the consultation

Jackie Smith, NMC Chief Executive, said:

“We have pressed for language controls for years so that nurses and midwives can practise safely and effectively, in order to further protect the public.

“The Code is clear that you must be able to communicate effectively with patients and colleagues.”

A new ground of impairment in relation to English language competence will also be introduced to our Fitness to Practise procedures.

Applicants from outside the EEA are already required to achieve an International English Language Training System (IELTS) score of seven but under the current laws we are unable to request proof of English language ability for those trained in Europe.

The 12-week consultation began on 1 June.

Other recent news…

NMC welcomes two new Council members

Published on 01 September 2016

Ruth Walker and Derek Pretty join the Council from 1 September 2016


New English language test requirements

Published on 28 June 2016

NMC to amend English language test requirements for applicants trained outside the UK


NMC statement on UK's withdrawal from EU

Published on 27 June 2016

No immediate impact on EU nurses and midwives