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The Health Service Executive (HSE) (Irish: Feidhmeannacht na Seirbhíse Sláinte) is responsible for the provision of health and personal social services for everyone living in Ireland, with public funds. The Executive was established by the Health Act, 2004 and came into official operation on 1 January 2005. It replaces the ten regional Health Boards, the Eastern Regional Health Authority and a number of other different agencies and organisations. The Minister for Health has overall responsibility for the Executive in Government. The HSE is Ireland’s largest employer with over 67,000 direct employees, and another 40,000 in funded health care organisations. It has an annual budget of over €13 billion, more than any other public sector organisation.

Healthcare structure in the HSE

The HSE is a large organisation of over 100,000 people, whose job is to run all of the public health services in Ireland. The HSE manages services through a structure designed to put patients and clients at the centre of the organisation.

The HSE Code of Governance provides an overview of the principles, policies, procedures and guidelines by which the HSE directs and controls its functions and manages its business, it is intended to guide the Directorate, leadership Team and all those working within the HSE and the agencies funded by the HSE, in performing their duties to the highest standards of accountability, integrity and propriety.

The HSE Code of Governance was first approved by the Minister for Health and Children in 2007. The Code has been reviewed and updated in line with best practice and to ensure it meets the requirements of the Code of Practice for the Governance of State bodies (2009). The revised Code was approved by the Minster for Health in December 2015.

The HSE’s has four Regional Health Forums, which includes representatives from the city and county councils within that area.


You need to be on the HSE medical register which is called NMBI (Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland) before you can do any clinical work or write prescription drugs in the Republic of Ireland.

How do I register?

Trained in Ireland

Trained Outside Ireland

What are the different types of registration ?

Every Nurse / Midwife is responsible for ensuring that their registration is current and appropriate for their individual circumstances within one of these categories:

Division Designation Titles Abbreviation
General General Nursing

Registered General Nurse

Midwives Midwife

Registered Midwife

Children and General (Integrated) Children’s Nurse

Registered Children’s Nurse

Psychiatric Psychiatric Nurse

Registered Psychiatric Nurse

Intellectual Disability Intellectual Disability Nurse

Registered Nurse Intellectual Disability

Public Health Public Health Nurse

Registered Public Health Nurse

Nurse Tutor Nurse Tutor

Registered Nurse Tutor

Nurse Prescribers* Nurse Presciber

Registered Nurse Prescriber

Advanced Nurse Practitioners* Advanced Nurse Practitioner

Registered Advanced Nurse Practitioners

Advanced Midwife Practitioners* Advanced Midwife Practitioner

Registered Advanced Midwife Practitioner



Is there a registration fee?

There is an initial fee for registration and an annual fee to remain on the register. You will need to contact the NMBI to find out which category of registration you can apply for and how much it will cost.

Find out more about cost of registration on the NMBI website

Immigration regulations

Note: The following information is intended as a general guide only, and should not be used as a sole source of information.

Any International medical graduate (IMG) coming to the Republic of Ireland must satisfy INIS immigration requirements. These are handled entirely separately from registration matters.

Find out more about the current visa procedures in the INIS Website here.

English language requirements

Who needs to provide evidence of knowledge of the English language?

All doctors who practise medicine in the Republic of Ireland must have the necessary knowledge of English to communicate effectively so they do not put the safety of their patients at risk. Communicating includes speaking, reading, writing and listening. Click here for more information.

Whether we ask you to give us evidence that you have the necessary knowledge of English depends on a number of things.


The Occupational English Test (OET) is an international English language test that assesses the language and communication skills of healthcare professionals who seek to register and practise in an English-speaking environment.

It provides a valid and reliable assessment of all four language skills – listening, reading, writing and speaking – with an emphasis on communication in medical and health professional settings.

OET tests international health practitioners in the following 12 professions:

  • Dentistry
  • Dietetics
  • Medicine
  • Nursing
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Optometry
  • Pharmacy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Podiatry
  • Radiography
  • Speech Pathology
  • Veterinary Science

OET is recognised and trusted by more than 40 regulatory healthcare bodies and councils in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Dubai, Namibia, UK (NMC) and Ireland (NMC). Many organisations, including hospitals, universities and colleges, are using OET as proof of a candidate’s ability to communicate effectively in a demanding healthcare environment. In addition, OET is recognised by the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection for a number of visa categories, including work and student visas.


IELTS is an English Language test administered by the British Council, IDP Education Australia and Cambridge ESOL. It is run in over 100 countries. You can find out more on the IELTS website at

For us to accept your IELTS certificate, it must meet the criteria.

Your IELTS certificate is valid for two years.

If you have obtained the required scores in the academic version of the IELTS test over two years ago, you may be able to prove to us that you have maintained your English language skills.

You can do this by submitting your original IELTS certificate showing that you got the required scores and one of the following:

  • Evidence that you have successfully completed a postgraduate course of study, where all elements of the course of study, including clinical activities, were taught and examined solely in English, within the past two years.
  • A reference from an employer or your tutor or lecturer on a postgraduate course of study from a country where English is the first or native language.

Please note that achievement of IELTS for the purpose of applying for registration with the NMBI may not be acceptable evidence of your English language skills for the purpose of obtaining a Irish Visa.

Primary medical qualification taught and examined in English

You may also be able to show us you have the necessary knowledge of English if your primary medical qualification has been taught and examined in English. In this case you would need to send:

  • An original letter or certificate from the institution where you qualified that confirms:
    a. all of the course, including clinical activities, were taught and examined solely in English
    b. at least 75% of any clinical interaction, including personal contact with patients, their families and other healthcare professionals, which took place as part of the course of study, was conducted in English
    c. the date you sat your final examination.

Applying for a Visa

Whether you need an Irish visa to land in the State or an Irish transit visa when arriving at a port in the State for the purposes of passing through the port in order to travel to another state depends on what country you are from.

Even if you are a national of a visa required country you may not require an Irish visa if:

  • you hold a residence card of a family member of a European Union Citizen,
  • the Irish Short Stay Visa Waiver Programme applies to you,
  • you hold a Convention travel document and wish to come to Ireland for a for short stay, or
  • you are a non-EU/EEA second level student resident in an EU/EEA Member State who is seeking to come to Ireland as part of a group school excursion.

Find out if you are a national of a visa required country and if one of the exceptions applies to you on these pages.

Countries whose nationals are visa required

Irish Short Stay Visa Waiver Programme

British Irish Visa Scheme

Residence card of a family member of a European Union Citizen

Convention travel documents


Working in the Republic of Ireland

Employers must apply for a work Permit and will usually be required to show that no suitably qualified resident worker is available to do the job. The process is simplified if the post is considered a shortage occupation. Once you have been issued with a Job Of Letter you will be able to apply for a General Employment Permit or Work Permit. This is the permission that you will need to stay in the Republic of Ireland and this visa will be specific to a particular post or job. If you then move to another job you would have to make a new application for leave. After a continuous period five years spent on a employment visa you can apply for indefinite leave to remain (permanent residency) in the Republic of Ireland.

Note: The above information is intended as a general guide only, and should not be used as a sole source of information.

Where to get good immigration advice

It is important to note that under the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, all organisations and individuals giving immigration advice must be authorised by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC). Lists of advisers can be found on the OISC website.


  • Faith / Religion – The Republic of Ireland has one of the most religiously diverse populations in Europe, and the right to religious freedom is embraced. Communities and individuals are free to practice their faith without hindrance and encouraged to openly celebrate it. It is illegal in the Republic of Ireland for anyone to discriminate against you because of your faith or religion. If they do you must report it.
  • Discrimination – It is illegal in the Republic of Ireland to discriminate against people because of their colour, race, ethnic or national origins, age, gender, sex or sexual orientation. If you have been discriminated against for any of these reasons, you must report it. If you have been found to have discriminated against someone you could be prosecuted.
  • Smoking – In the Republic of Ireland smoking is forbidden in all enclosed public places such as pubs, restaurants, nightclubs, shops, offices, government buildings, factories, private members’ clubs, in cinemas and on public transport. You are allowed to smoke outdoors, at home or in provided smoking rooms in prisons, care homes and hotels. Certain outdoor locations such as sports arenas and railway platforms could have a smoking ban. If you are unsure about whether you can smoke somewhere, look for signs or ask somebody before you light your cigarette.
  • Alcohol – It is illegal to drink alcohol in some public areas in the Republic of Ireland. If you are caught drinking alcohol in a public place where drinking is not permitted, it will be confiscated from you. Excessive drinking can lead to public order offences for which you can be arrested and prosecuted. Remember it is illegal to drive any vehicle whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Spitting in Public – Whilst it is not illegal to spit in public, many people will find it offensive. If you need to sneeze or blow your nose, use a tissue or handkerchief so you don’t cause offence.
  • Appointments – It is important to arrive on time for meetings and appointments. In places such as hospitals and doctor’s surgeries you are advised to arrive 10 minutes early. This will help to keep waiting times down. If you know that you are going to be late or unable to attend a meeting or appointment, you should let the person know in advance.
  • Visiting Friends – If you are invited to someone’s home for a meal, you may wish to take a small gift (such as flowers, chocolates or a bottle of wine) or you could invite them to your home in return. People from the UK will be interested to hear about your home country, so you might like to bring some photographs or small items to show your friends or guests.
  • Greeting People – In the Republic of Ireland it is polite to say ‘please’ when you ask for something and ‘thank you’ when you receive something, or if someone is kind to you. If you meet somebody you know say ‘hello’, or if you want make a more formal greeting you can shake hands. In the Republic of Ireland you do this with your right hand.
  • Queues – Wait in a queue (or line) for buses, at supermarket checkouts and other public places. People will be offended and think that you are rude if you do not.
  • Social Activities – If you take part in social activities you will find it easier to make friends. You can visit your local community centre to find out what social activities they arrange. Going to a public house (pub) is a common social activity for people in the Republic of Ireland. Pubs do sell non-alcoholic drinks and often hold special events in which you can get involved in.

Remember, if you feel uncomfortable about taking part in something you have been invited to do, just say no, you will not cause offence.


One of your primary concerns when moving to the Republic of Ireland is where you will live. Accommodation is NOT provided by your employer, the information provided here will help point you in the right direction.

Can You Live in the Republic of Ireland?

Types of Accommodation

When looking for housing in the UK you have many options, but some of these can be expensive. You must remember to look carefully at what you can realistically afford.

Guest Houses / Bed and Breakfast These are often expensive and would ideally suit short-term stays.

Letting Agents may require references, a deposit and one month’s rent in advance.

Cost of Living

Cost of living in Ireland is 8.20% higher than in United Kingdom (aggregate data for all cities, rent is not taken into account). Rent in Ireland is 18.65% higher than inUnited Kingdom (average data for all cities). click here

Grades & Pay Scale

If you are not used to the grades of doctor in the Republic of Ireland they can at first seem confusing.

Click here for further information.



Majority of medical professionals are employed via PAYE stands for Pay As You Earn. The PAYE system is a method of Income tax and USC deductions under which a person’s employer calculates and deducts the amount(s) due each time a payment of wages, salary, etc. is made to an employee. It is also a method of collecting PRSI, click here for more information.



The levels of education in Ireland are primary, secondary and higher (often known as “third-level”) education. In recent yearsfurther education has grown immensely. Growth in the economy since the 1960s has driven much of the change in the education system. Education in Ireland is free at all levels, including college (university), but only for students applying from the European Union.[1] For universities there are student service fees (up to €3,000 in 2015),[2] which students are required to pay on registration, to cover examinations, insurance and registration costs.[3][4]

The Department of Education and Skills, under the control of the Minister for Education and Skills, is in overall control of policy, funding and direction, while other important organisations are the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland, the Higher Education Authority, and on a local level the Education and Training Boards are the only comprehensive system of government organisation. There are many other statutory and non-statutory bodies that have a function in the education system. The current Minister for Education is Richard Bruton.

Education is compulsory for children in Ireland from the ages of six to sixteen or until students have completed three years of second-level education. Click here for more information

Applying for jobs

Feel free to visit our jobs section to find the latest vacancies as per your grade & specialism.

If you require any further guidance,
get in touch, we’d love to hear from you.
Contact us on +(44) 1234 88913