The UK Health and Care Worker Visa: Your Pathway to a Rewarding Career in the UK Healthcare Sector
Are you a healthcare professional planning to work in the UK? You’re in the right place. The UK Health and Care Worker Visa is a dedicated visa category specifically designed to facilitate international health professionals in providing their invaluable services across the UK’s healthcare sector.
The Health and Care Worker Visa serves as a lifeline to the healthcare sector, allowing it to function effectively and efficiently, bolstering the delivery of critical healthcare services to the population. The UK government recognises the vital contribution of overseas healthcare professionals and has therefore made the application process more straightforward.
However, to apply for this visa, you must meet specific criteria. This includes having a job offer from an approved sponsor, such as an NHS trust, and demonstrating your proficiency in English. Additionally, you must show that you have the required maintenance funds to support your stay in the UK.
Criteria for the UK Health and Care Worker Visa
To qualify for a Health and Care Worker Visa, you must satisfy several requirements:
- A confirmed job offer from a UK employer who is a licensed visa sponsor.
- The role you’ve been offered must qualify for sponsorship.
- Proof of English language proficiency.
- Sufficient funds to support yourself during your stay in the UK, unless you’re exempt.
Each of these elements plays a crucial role in the application process. Understanding these requirements thoroughly is key to successfully obtaining your visa.
Eligible Professions for the Health and Care Visa: An Updated Overview
The dynamic nature of healthcare necessitates regular updates to the list of professions eligible for the Health & Care visa. Here are the professions currently included:
Health & Care visas are usually granted for an initial period of either up to 3 years or up to 5 years. This is usually in line with the work duration indicated on the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) assigned to you, in effect your UK work permit.
If your Health & Care sponsorship continues, it is possible to apply for UK work visa extensions from within the UK indefinitely.
It is possible to apply to switch visa category from within the UK into this visa type, if you are not currently in the UK holding one of the following visa types:
- Visitor visa
- Short-Term Student visa
- Parent of a Child visa
- Seasonal Worker visa
- Domestic Worker visa
- Any Discretionary visa
Please however note that you may still need to meet the requirement to have worked for your employer outside of the UK for the required period, unless exempt.
Following 5 years continuous residence, you may qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK, effectively permanent residence providing all the requirements are met at that time.
Spouses or partners and children under the age of 18 may apply for visas to accompany you to the UK as your ‘dependants’. Your spouse or partner should be permitted to work.
It is permitted to switch into the Health & Care visa type from within the UK if you were last granted a visa under certain visa categories. In all other circumstances, initial Skilled Worker visa applications must be from abroad, either from your country of nationality or legal residence.
UKVI aim to process visas as follows:
Visa applications submitted outside of the UK:
- Standard processing: 15 working days
- Priority Service processing: 5 working days
Visa applications submitted inside the UK:
- Standard processing: 8 weeks
- Priority Service processing: 5 working days
Important: UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) do not guarantee processing times and delays do occur. We advise that you do not book any non refundable travel until your visa has been approved and your work visa is in your possession. Priority services can be suspended without notice and may not be available at the time of application.
The UKVI application fee is as follows:
Applying outside or inside of the UK:
- Visa up to 3 years duration: £247; or
- Visa more than 3 years (max 5) duration: £479
No, those who qualify for the Health & Care visa are exempt from the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS).
Let Immtell Guide Your Journey to a Healthcare Career in the UK
Choosing a healthcare career in the UK can be a rewarding experience. The process of applying for a Health and Care Worker Visa, however, can be overwhelming. At Immtell, we understand the intricacies of the visa application process and are here to guide you every step of the way.
Our team of experienced immigration advisors will ensure your application is as strong as possible, increasing your chances of success. We’ll provide expert advice and guidance, helping you navigate the often complex terrain of UK immigration rules. Reach out to us today to start your journey towards a fulfilling healthcare career in the UK.