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Gaining Professional Registration in the UK

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Gaining professional registration in the UK is without a doubt the most time-consuming – so it’s the best place to start!

For over 21 years, MediRecruit Director, Clare Jones has been assisting Australian and New Zealand Allied Health professionals to either take off on a working holiday and locum in the UK, or make the move permanently. Having worked in the UK as a locum Occupational Therapist herself, assisting healthcare professionals to work abroad is something Clare’s passionate about. There is so much to gain both professionally and personally from the experience. There are a number of preparations that need to be undertaken before you can work in the United Kingdom as an allied health professional. Here’s Clare’s advice on the five most common questions she’s asked about gaining professional registration to work in the UK:


Do I need to be registered to work in the UK as an Allied Health professional?

If you’re an Occupational Therapist, Speech Pathologist, Physiotherapist, Podiatrist, Radiographer or Dietitian you’ll need to be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). Of note, Sonographers do not require HCPC registration to work in the UK.


Can I work in the UK without gaining professional registration?

Without HCPC registration you cannot work in your chosen profession in the UK. However, in some professions such as Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Speech Therapy, you can work as an allied health assistant. Often therapists who arrive before their HCPC application is approved work as allied health assistants.


How much does it cost?

As an international applicant, you can expect to pay up to £692  ($1354 AU) to gain registration with HCPC. This includes a non-refundable application fee of £495 ($970 AU), paid when you submit your application. A bi-annual registration fee of £196.42 ($385 AU) is charged when your application is approved. HCPC fees are subject to change as are exchange rates but as a rough guide, you should set aside $1600 (AUS) to cover the entire cost of the HCPC application including the cost of the Course Information Form.


What is the HCPC Course Information Form?

The HCPC Course Information Form provides HCPC with details of the theoretical and practical content and learning outcomes of the primary qualification you have completed and without it, your application will not be approved. Your university should complete the Course Information Form, and they will likely charge you for this.  As a general rule, it usually takes a number of weeks for universities to complete this form. Considering this, it’s best to start the HCPC application by calling your university to request the course information form.


How long will it take for my application to be processed?

Processing times for HCPC applications vary.  But as a general rule, Clare suggests to allow at least 3-6 months for your application to be processed from the time you submit it.


If you’re an Allied Health professional considering a working holiday in the UK, our team can assist you with all the necessary preparations ensuring you’re 100% compliant to work in the NHS and with private organisations in the UK. We’ll source you great locum and permanent roles tailored to your professional specialty and areas of interest. And best of all this service is FREE of charge! Please contact us for a confidential discussion.

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