International registration reforms

The Dentists, Dental Care Professionals, Nurses, Nursing Associates and Midwives (International Registrations) Order 2023 (the 2023 Order) made amendments to international registration provisions of the Dentists Act 1984.  

The amendments increase the flexibility we have to set rules and to amend routes to registration for dental professionals with overseas qualifications, providing a legal framework that enables us to modernise the processes for the registration of those who qualify outside the UK.  

We are now developing a comprehensive framework of routes to registration for professionals who have qualified overseas, facilitating access to the UK registers, while maintaining the standards that ensure public safety.

Developing this framework will take some time, during which we need to continue to enable access to the registers for appropriately qualified professionals. In the short term, this means continuing with current arrangements, the Overseas Registration Examination (ORE) for dentists, and assessed applications for dental care professionals (DCPs). 

We consulted on proposals for new rules for international registration last year. Our outcome report provides a summary of the views received and our responses to the issues raised during the consultation. 

The new rules came into effect on 9 March 2024:

The rules for dentists introduce an application processing fee for overseas qualified dentists who want to sit the ORE, and align terminology used in other legislation. Regulations that set fee levels for the application processing fee and examination fees are also in effect.

We will continue to engage with and consult our stakeholders as we move forward with the development of the longer term plans for the comprehensive framework.