You are here: Professional regulation Exclusive: EU nurses face up to £ fee hike under no-deal Brexit 24 October, By Jo Stephenson European Union nurses wanting to come and work in the UK face the prospect of much higher fees and a tougher application process in the event of a no-deal Brexit, Nursing Times has learnt. The different approach to registering adult and non-adult fields of nursing is outlined in a letter from the Nursing and Midwifery Council, setting out what leaving the UK with and without a deal will mean for registrants and those applying to the nursing register.
While adult nurses from the EU will face a £63 increase in the cost of application and registration, the cost will shoot up by nearly £1, for non-adult nurses, explained the letter — seen by Nursing Times.
The plans have been greeted with concern by the nursing community, given the desperate shortages of learning disability and mental health nurses — particularly in England.
If the UK leaves the EU with a deal, the country will enter into a transition period until the end of December next year, it stated. However, a no-deal Brexit will mean immediate changes, including for EU nurses applying to work in the UK after the country leaves. The document states that the government has introduced legislation that allows the NMC to continue to register nurses from the EU in the event of a no-deal.
However, they will see an increase in the cost of application and registration of £63, because they will be paying overseas evaluation and registration fees instead of the former EU fees. Dave Munday Dave Munday, lead professional officer for mental health at the union Unite, expressed concern at the plans.
Under the current system, free online diabetes courses for nurses qualifications are individually assessed by the NMC to identify any shortfalls in training against UK standards. If they are found to be lacking in any areas, they may be required to pay for extra training to get their skills up to speed but this rarely happens, Nursing Times understands.
All EU applicants will therefore pay the statutory fees for overseas registration. As well as setting out the process for new EU applicants in the event of no-deal, the NMC letter explained what it would mean for existing registrants and those who have already applied. Those who have begun the application process before or on the day the UK leaves the EU without a deal — and have already paid their assessment fee — will be able to carry on their application as normal and will have up to two years to complete the process.
Separate arrangements have been made for new applicants from EFTA and Switzerland who — like non-adult nurses — will almost certainly need to apply through the overseas route and take the competence test.