• 23 April 2021
  • 11 min read

How To Apply To Work In The UK As A Healthcare Assistant (If You’re From Nigeria)

  • Judith Chizarum Odum
    Healthcare Assistant
    • Laura Bosworth
    • Richard Gill
    • Aubrey Hollebon
    • Mat Martin
    • Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Janet Olugbenga
  • 11
  • 11110
"The whole process isn’t stress free but very easy and fun if you carefully follow the steps and instructions"

Judith is a Nigerian planning to relocate to the UK and work as a Healthcare Assistant. She’s the perfect person to explain how healthcare workers from Nigeria can find work as an HCA in the UK.

Topics Covered In This Article

What Is A Healthcare Assistant?

You Will Need - These Qualifications

You Will Need - Health And Care Worker Visa

You Will Need - These Documents For Your Visa Application

You Will Need - Experience

You Will Need - A Job Offer

You Will Need - Your Employer To Be Approved

You Will Need - A Certificate Of Sponsorship

You Will Need - Knowledge Of English

You Will Need - Money (Monetary Requirements)

Other Documents You MIGHT Need

Conclusion

What Is A Healthcare Assistant?

A Healthcare Assistant is also (or used to be) known as a Nursing Assistant or Auxiliary Nurse in the UK.

They provide care to patients in hospitals or other medical settings under the watch of a professional, and they work closely with patients to help aid their recovery, comfort and safety.

There’s more information about the role of a Healthcare Assistant here.

You Will Need - These Qualifications

If you’re from Nigeria and you want to work in the UK as a Healthcare Assistant, you don’t necessarily need loads of qualifications because most of the care giving jobs come with on-the-job training and close supervision.

But you have an added advantage if you have either of the following:

Care Certificate (can be gotten from HEE - Health Education England approved training organization in the UK)

● Diploma in Health and Social Care

● Diploma in Health and Social Care

● GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) at grades 9-4 (A* to C)

● WAEC or SSCE can serve as equivalent Healthcare qualifications

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Apart from the above listed items that some employers expect, there are no mandatory requirements for a Healthcare Assistant position - from the research I conducted and the job description from some Healthcare Assistant vacancies.

You Will Need - Health And Care Worker Visa

To work in the UK as a Nigerian, you definitely need a visa.

From the various types of visas available, I discovered that the best visa for this role is the “Health and Care Worker visa”, under the skilled worker visa, which was formerly categorized as Tier 2 visa.

A Health and Care Worker visa permits medical professionals to go to or stay within the UK to work in adult social care, with the NHS or an NHS supplier.

This means that you are to look out for Healthcare Assistant roles in the NHS, NHS suppliers (organizations providing medical services to the NHS) or in adult social care then your potential employers could be hospitals, nursing homes, and companies that provide in-home healthcare.

You Will Need - These Documents For Your Visa Application

When you apply you’ll need to provide:

● your certificate of sponsorship reference number (your employer will give it to you)

● proof of your knowledge of English

● a valid passport or any document that shows your identity and nationality

● your job title and annual salary

● your job’s occupation code (6141 - for nursing auxiliaries and assistants)

● the name of your employer and their sponsor licence number (this should be on your certificate of sponsorship)

Ask your employer for your certificate of sponsorship if you don’t have one.

How Long Does Your Visa Last?

The visa can last for up to five years considering the number of years you pay for when making your application. You ought to extend or update your visa when it expires or if you get another job or employer.

You Will Need - Experience

To qualify for a Health and Care Worker visa, you are likely to need to be:

● a doctor

● a nurse

● a health care provider

● an adult social care professional

● work in a health or social care job

You Will Need - A Job Offer

Before you can qualify for a visa you will need a confirmed job offer, plus:

● a ‘certificate of sponsorship’ from a UK employer with information about the role you’ve been offered within the UK

● be paid a minimum salary

● confirmation the offer is from an approved UK employer

You Will Need - Your Employer To Be Approved

Approved employers are also regarded as sponsors, because they’re sponsoring you to go to or stay within the UK.

An approved employer has been approved by the UK immigration / Home Office.

Your employer needs to apply for a sponsor licence if they‘re not currently approved by the UK home office and they meet the eligibility requirements.

They will need to pay a fee:

● £536 for small businesses and charities

● £1,476 for medium and large organisations.

It normally takes around 8 weeks to process a licence application.

You Will Need - A Certificate Of Sponsorship

If you already have an employment offer then they (your sponsor) will make sure you meet the eligibility requirements.

They’ll offer you a ‘certificate of sponsorship’ so that you can prove this.

The certificate of sponsorship isn’t a physical document but an electronic record.

It’ll have a reference number, which you’ll need for your visa application.

You have to apply for your visa within 3 months of getting your certificate of sponsorship.

You Will Need - Knowledge Of English

You need to prove your knowledge of English language when you apply. You must prove you know how to read, write, speak and understand English to a minimum of level B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale.

You Will Need - Money (Monetary Requirements)

When you apply for a Health and Care Worker visa, you would need to:

● pay an application fee of £232 if you’ll be in the UK for up to 3 years, or

● £464 if you’ll be in the UK for more than 3 years

● you will need to have a minimum of £1,270 in your bank account to prove that you can support yourself for a month when you arrive the UK

Alternatively, if your employer can support you, your certificate of sponsorship must confirm it.

Notes: Partners And Children

If you have a partner and / or children then you will need to also comply with a set of demands that need satisfying in that respect.

I won't detail these here as you will discover the detail on this once you begin your own application.

Other Documents You MIGHT Need

You might also be asked to provide:

● proof that you have enough personal savings to support yourself in the UK, for example bank statements (unless your certificate of sponsorship shows your employer can support you)

● proof of your relationship with your child(ren) or partner if they’re applying with you

● your tuberculosis test result. You need $150 for your test and $60 for your dependent (below 11 years old) from International Organization For Migration (IOM) in Lagos or Abuja

● a criminal record certificate (if you’ve lived in more than one country you have to provide a certificate from each country you’ve lived in)

● if  you’re under 28, you’ll need a certificate from any country you’ve resided in for a period of 12 months or more since you turned 18

● if you’re over 27, you’ll need a certificate from any country you’ve resided in over the last 10 years

● your unique UK NARIC (National Academic Recognition Information Centre) reference number if your qualification is from outside the UK (you’ll need to apply for this through the UK NARIC visas and Nationality Service)

● an unused page in your passport for your visa

Conclusion

The whole process isn’t stress free but very easy and fun if you carefully follow the steps and instructions.

However, if you feel you might get stuck or make a terrible mistake, seek professional help from a VISA processing agency.

Try to ensure that all details provided are accurate to avoid clash of information because the UK Home Office will use the personal information you provide to decide whether to grant your application and they may also share your information with other public and private sector organisations in the UK and overseas and I’m sure you don’t want the information you have provided to be any different from the truth.

I hope this article is well detailed to guide you.

You can ask questions or give reviews in the comments section.

Thanks for riding with me on the long read!

All the best in your application.

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Do you have any questions about this article?

Ask Judith questions below

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  • Judith Chizarum Odum
    Healthcare Assistant

About the author

  • Judith Chizarum Odum
    Healthcare Assistant

I'm a Nigerian with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Kinetics and Health Education and Diploma in Nursing and Patient Care. I'm planning to relocate to the UK with my family and work as a Healthcare Assistant.

  • 11 Comments
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    • Mufutau Ayansola 18 days ago
      Mufutau Ayansola
    • Mufutau Ayansola
      18 days ago

      Good evening. Please I have completed my training here in Nigeria as a level 3 health care assistant and I ... read more

    • Temitope Falayi 19 days ago
      Temitope Falayi
    • Temitope Falayi
      19 days ago

      I'ma Nigeria with bachelor's Degree in Health Information management and Diploma in Health information management I am planning to relocate ... read more

    • King Sizzy 23 days ago
      King Sizzy
    • King Sizzy
      23 days ago

      Goodday I hope I get a quick response to this. I have a Bachelor's degree with a 2.1, I want ... read more

      • I don’t think you still need IELTS if you get a NARIC certificate except you don’t speak fluent English. But of course, the NARIC will not be issued without proper academic qualifications. It’s an add... read more

        I don’t think you still need IELTS if you get a NARIC certificate except you don’t speak fluent English. But of course, the NARIC will not be issued without proper academic qualifications. It’s an added advantage that you were taught in English language. Nonetheless, I’ll advice that you seek the opinion of the person helping with your visa application. I hope my response was timely and helpful.
        read less

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum

        Also, be informed that UK NARIC is now called UK ENIC

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Nwafor Obioma one month ago
      Nwafor Obioma
    • Nwafor Obioma
      one month ago

      Thanks so much for the information. Please I'm a Community Health worker how do I apply

      • You need to search for job offers that have sponsorship opportunities for overseas workers. Make sure that the sponsors you find are in the list of sponsors in the UK home office.

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Lovelyn Akolade one month ago
      Lovelyn Akolade
    • Lovelyn Akolade
      one month ago

      How do we get sponsors/employer from home country?

      • You have to search for sponsors. Make sure that the sponsors are on the list of sponsors in the UK home office.

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Abigail Isek one month ago
      Abigail Isek
    • Abigail Isek
      one month ago

      Judith thank you so much. I'm planning to enroll for one health assistant course here in Nigeria to enable me ... read more

      • Whichever one you can afford is fine but it’s best you study abroad because their health policies and systems differ from ours. Even if you study home, you’ll still need training before you can work a... read more

        Whichever one you can afford is fine but it’s best you study abroad because their health policies and systems differ from ours. Even if you study home, you’ll still need training before you can work abroad. You can equally make research about the courses that are equivalent to those you intend to study abroad here in Nigeria.
        read less

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Josephine Edokpayi 2 months ago
      Josephine Edokpayi
    • Josephine Edokpayi
      2 months ago

      Thank you for the information.

      • You’re welcome

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Chidinma Enifome-Diejomaoh 2 months ago
      Chidinma Enifome-Diejomaoh
    • Chidinma Enifome-Diejomaoh
      2 months ago

      Thank you Judith for this information very insightful. I want to confirm if I can apply for a health care ... read more

      • Yes you can. Some jobs even offer care certificate training and certification to be sure you meet their care standards.

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Esther Annobil 2 months ago
      Esther Annobil
    • Esther Annobil
      2 months ago

      Thank you for this. But for this job which of the IELTS will be suitable, academic or general?

      • General IELTS would be most suitable. Although, I don’t think you need to write IELTS if you studied in English language(up to bachelor’s degree or it’s equivalent). But you need to prove the level of... read more

        General IELTS would be most suitable. Although, I don’t think you need to write IELTS if you studied in English language(up to bachelor’s degree or it’s equivalent). But you need to prove the level of your knowledge of English Language using the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages(CEFR)scale.
        read less

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Margaret Olabisi 3 months ago
      Margaret Olabisi
    • Margaret Olabisi
      3 months ago

      Thank you for this. it was very informative. How do we get or find out about the details for partners ... read more

      • The details provided can serve for a nursing assistant provided you’re using the ‘Health and Care Worker Visa’. For further concerns or inquiry, you can contact the UK visas and immigration.

        Replied by: Judith Chizarum Odum
    • Student Nurse Chinyere Jennifer Onuigbo 4 months ago
      Student Nurse Chinyere Jennifer Onuigbo
    • Student Nurse Chinyere Jennifer Onuigbo
      4 months ago

      Thank you for sharing this information, I appreciate your time and effort that you put in giving out this information.