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How Much Does It Cost To Be a UK Nurse

In recent years, the United Kingdom (UK) has faced a growing demand for qualified healthcare professionals, particularly nurses. To address this shortage, the UK has opened its doors to Filipino nurses, who have become an invaluable asset to the country's healthcare system. This article explores the journey of Filipino nurses to the UK, the demand for their skills, and the vital role they play in filling the gaps in the healthcare workforce.

The Growing Needs for Nurses in the UK

The UK has been grappling with a shortage of nurses, a challenge intensified by factors such as an aging population, increased healthcare demands, and the global COVID-19 pandemic. According to recent statistics, the UK has been actively seeking to recruit thousands of nurses from around the world to meet the growing demand for healthcare services.

Filipino Nurses: Answering the Call:

Filipino nurses, known for their excellent clinical skills, compassionate care, and proficiency in English, have become a significant source of support for the UK healthcare system. The journey for Filipino nurses to work in the UK typically involves a rigorous process, including English language proficiency exams, nursing assessments, and compliance with UK nursing standards.

Statistics on Filipino Nurses in the UK:

As of the latest available data, Filipino nurses constitute a substantial portion of the international nursing workforce in the UK. Statistics indicate that the number of Filipino nurses has steadily increased in recent years, with many successfully transitioning to roles in various healthcare settings, including hospitals, clinics, and long-term care facilities.

The UK Government's Initiatives:

Recognizing the crucial role played by international nurses, including Filipinos, the UK government has implemented initiatives to streamline the recruitment process and ease the transition for foreign healthcare professionals. These efforts aim to ensure a smoother integration of Filipino nurses into the UK healthcare system, contributing to the overall improvement of patient care.

Benefits for Filipino Nurses Working in the UK:

Apart from addressing the shortage of healthcare professionals in the UK, Filipino nurses also benefit from the opportunity to gain international experience, exposure to advanced medical technologies, and the chance to enhance their professional skills. Additionally, working in the UK provides Filipino nurses with a chance to experience diverse cultures and contribute to the global healthcare community.

UKRN Expenses and Fees

Now that you know why Filipino nurses are widely recruited in the UK, it's time to decide if you want to explore and pivot your nursing career as a UK RN. Whilst it's a great opportunity to work as a nurse in the UK, bear in mind that there are associated expenses and fees that you will need to prepare for your UK RN journey.

1. English Proficiency Review and IELTs/OET Exam

Once you are already a registered nurse in the Philippines with hospital experience, the first step in your UKRN journey, most of the time, is the English Proficiency Exam. You have the option to choose between IELTs or OET. IELTS assesses broad English language proficiency, while OET concentrates on the ability to communicate effectively in a hospital setting. It is also advisable to take IELTS/OET Review before taking the actual exams. There are a lot of review centres that you can choose from, which range from 2500-6000 pesos.

2. NMC Account Registration, CBT Exam and OSCE

Nurses who want to work in the UK must register with the NMC (Nursing and Midwifery Council) to practice as registered nurses in the UK. This registration process involves passing certain education and language requirements and passing the NMC’s CBT (Computer-Based Test) and OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination).

NOTE: Depending on the employer, these fees may be refunded as per the contract.

3. State of Board Verification (SBV) and COGS (Certificate of Good Standing)

The PRC SBV (State Board Verification) and COGs (Certificate of Good Standing) are documents required by the NMC during the registration process. SBV is your verification registration status with PRC while the COGs are your certification that you are in good standing with the PRC and you do not have any pending cases or disciplinary actions.

4. International Organization of Migration (IOM) and UK TB Testing

One of the Visa requirements you need for your UKRN journey is a certificate confirming that you do not have active TB or Tuberculosis. The only approved clinic in the Philippines to process this is the IOM (International Organization for Migration Health Centre) located in Makati City, Metro Manila.

5. VISA Fees

The employer typically pays or reimburses these fees, except for the Dependent Visa. It is important to review your contract thoroughly to ensure that you will receive a refund for these fees once you start working in the UK. IHS is a mandatory fee paid by applicants who will stay more than 6 months which will entitle them to receive free NHS medical services. A health and Care Visa is a new visa for eligible healthcare professionals and dependents; if you qualify for Health and Care Visa, then you do not need to pay for IHS. A dependent Visa will allow you to bring your partner or family member to the UK. The fees vary depending on the type of Visa, the duration of stay and the age of your dependent.

6. UK Household Expenses

Like in any country, the cost of living depends on the region. The biggest household expense is rent, which differs by location and accommodation type. Council tax is one of the mandatory fees that needs to be paid to the local government. Other expenses like gas, heating, water, broadband and electricity are all necessary utilities that are essential for daily life. This also depends on the usage and supplier. Another mandatory fee is the TV licence; this is for those who watch or record live television broadcasts.

7. Professional Fees

In order to work as a nurse in the UK, you need to be on the register and renew it every year for £120. Don't forget you also need to fulfil your revalidation every three years to confirm that you're fit to practise as a UK RN. Joining the union is optional, but we highly recommend doing so. Unions can provide representation and support (professional and legal) should you encounter problems and conflicts at work.

8. Other Expenses (UK Transportation)

Whether you own a car or use public transportation, your choice can have its own pros and cons. You just have to decide what works for you and what you can afford at the end of the day. If you live in a busy city like London, public transport is so efficient that you probably wouldn't need a car. However, in our experience living in the countryside, owning a car provides great convenience in going to different places, running errands and also commuting to and from work.

There you have it, a comprehensive guide on the costs associated with becoming a UKRN. We hope that this information has helped you in making a decision to pursue your UKRN journey. Remember that the demand for nurses in the UK is continuously growing, and Filipino nurses are highly valued for their compassion, excellent clinical skills, cultural compatibility, and English language proficiency. While the expenses and fees may seem daunting, it is a small investment compared to the career opportunities and benefits that await you in the UK. So, if you are still on the fence about pursuing your dream of becoming a UKRN, this might just be the sign you've been waiting for. Don't let fear and doubt hold you back from achieving your goals. As the quote says, "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." Good luck, and we wish you all the best in your UKRN journey!



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