The NMC has recently proposed additional measures to provide routes for nurses to resume their career after an employment break. Additionally, the cost of the test for overseas applicants to register will be reduced to make it financially more feasible for them.
From 1 April 2019 the cost of professional test undertaken by Overseas Nurses, Midwives and Nursing Associates, will be significantly reduced by more than 20%.
The changes which was agreed by the NMC along with the associating organisations has resulted in the cost reduction of the Computer-Based Test(CBT), is now £90, as compared to the previous cost £130. The full cost of the practical examination (OSCE) is reduced to £794 from £992. The resit cost of the exam will be £397 from £496. These new costs will be implemented from 1st April 2019.
This new proposal is implemented in order to help applicants with the right skills to join the register by making it as cost effective as possible for them. This should also help the applicants to re-join the register after they have had a career break as this would allow them to choose a test of competence to demonstrate that their skills and knowledge are up to date, rather than taking up a course which can take between 3 to 12 months complete.
Additionally, now the educators will be able to evaluate the skills and experience of the applicants and the courses can be designed accordingly. This process increases the flexibility for the people when they choose to return to practice course. The NMC will no longer state the minimum length of the course.
The return to practice proposals will be discussed at its meeting on Wednesday 27 March.
A new test of competence assurance panel will also be introduced as part of NMC’s drive for consistency and quality assurance. A group of experienced nurses, midwives and other health and care professionals, will use their broad range of expertise to ensure consistency of tests across different test centres.
These changes are part of the NMC’s ongoing evaluation to review and improve the experience of those wanting to join their register. This process is to ensure that the applicants with the right skills and knowledge can join the UK workforce as quickly as possible while ensuring high standards of care.