UK to change Skills Shortage Occupations for nurses, 14 August

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As previously reported, obtaining a visa or work permit for foreign-born nurses to travel to the UK just became more problematic.

The Home Office announced last week they would be removing 'general nurses' from the Skills Shortage Occcupations listing. As of this week, advance notice of the exact change and when it will take effect has been published.

From 14 August, 2006, the category of "all nurses" will be removed from the list and will be replaced with a specified listing; midwives will remain on the listing.

As per the revised section of the Skills Shortage Occcupations listing :

Nurses employed or engaged in the NHS at band 7 or 8 of Agenda for Change, or those employed or engaged in one or more of the following specialties:

• Audiology
• Sleep/respiratory physiology
• Neurophysiology
• Cardiac physiology
• Operating theatre nursing
• Clinical radiology
• Pathology
• Critical care

Anyone wishing to apply to the UK for a visa based upon shortage occupations will need to state which of the Agenda for Change bands or nursing specialties they are attempting to qualify under.

• All work permit applications for UK entry received on or after 14 August, 2006 for nursing posts, other than those listed above, will need to be subject to a full resident labor test.

• Employers will be required to submit evidence that posts have been advertised, with full details of those who applied and were interviewed, and why resident nationals were not considered suitable

Only when the resident labor test has been satisfied will consideration be given to issuing a work permit.

Persons who have no citizenship with Britain or an EU country are most directly affected since this is one of the most important vehicles toward obtaining an HSMP visa.


UK government to take nurses off skills shortage occupations list
Nearly 80% of new UK graduates in nursing face unemployment

Current UK critical skills shortage list
New versions of UK visa and work permit forms available