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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 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 register 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 to introduce two sets of rules from July to September 2023: one to replace the current ORE Rules, and one to set out the process for dealing with applications from DCPs who have qualified overseas. These rules have now been made by our Council and will come into effect on 9 March 2024. 

The current rules remain in place until these rules come into effect next year. The consultation outcome report provides a summary of the views received and our responses to the issues raised. The rules being introduced in March this year provide the basis for the introduction of new ORE application processing fee, and align terminology used in other legislation.

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.