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The new visa rules will help hospitals across the UK to access the staff they need more quickly.
The new visa rules will help hospitals across the UK to access the staff they need more quickly.

New UK visa rules: Doctors, nurses need not take TOEFL, IELTS exam

  • healthcare professionals will be exempt from the English language requirement for UK visa application
  • Earlier, the candidates had to take OET as well as TOEFL or IELTS like exam to apply for visa

NEW DELHI : Under the new rules, doctors, nurses, dentists and midwives applying for Tier 2 (General) visas for UK will not need to sit for English language tests like TOEFL and IELTS as Occupational English Test (OET) scores are enough for them.

Earlier, the candidates had to take OET to register with Nursing and Midwifery Council and the General Medical Council, which are the two healthcare boards in the UK, as well as TOEFL or IELTS like exam to apply for visa.

“The Home Office has also streamlined English language testing ensuring that doctors, dentists, nurses and midwives who have already passed an English language test accepted by the relevant professional body, do not have to sit another test before entry to the UK on a Tier 2 visa," the UK government said in a release.

This means that these healthcare professionals will be exempt from the English language requirement for their visa application where they have used their successful OET results for registering with the relevant healthcare regulator. The test was recognised by the UK’s Nursing and Midwifery Council and the General Medical Council almost two years ago.

The Occupational English Test (OET) is designed to meet the specific English language needs of the healthcare sector. It assesses the language proficiency of healthcare professionals who wish to register and practise in an English-speaking environment. OET is conducted by Cambridge Boxhill Language Assessment (CBLA), a venture between Cambridge Assessment English and Box Hill Institute.

Sujata Stead, CEO, Cambridge Boxhill Language Assessment, which conducts the OET, said this change which was announced last week will make sure that hospitals and medical practices across the UK will be able to access the staff they need more quickly.

The change will apply to all Tier 2 (General) visa applications submitted from October 1.

(Agency inputs)

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