Non-EU Dentists Working in the UK

Foreign Dentist Looking To Work In The UK

We speak to hundreds of EU & Non-EU Qualified Dentists looking to move to the UK. Our experience has enabled us to provide you with the information and guidance in making the transition as smooth as possible.

In order to begin practising dentistry in the UK you will need to follow the following procedure:

  1. Register with the GDC (General Dental Council) . The GDC are the UKs governing body for Dentistry. You will receive a GDC number which will enable you to be recognised as a Dental Professional in the United Kingdom. Dependant on where you qualified you may have to do the Overseas Registration Exam, formerly known as the IQE. You are exempt from this examination if you obtained a recognised qualification from within the EEA.

  3. All overseas Dentists EEA qualified or otherwise must complete an English language test if you were taught dentistry in a language other than English, there are many recognised tests but three of the most popular are; the IELTS and the Linguarama.

  5. Find a job. It is normally at this point that you can begin to search for work in the UK as a Dentist. Scotland is less strict and does not require you to complete a language exam but most employers will consider this good practice anyway. If you register with Dental Elite we will keep you informed of positions for people with your experience level as the arise.

  7. Obtain your Professional Indemnity Insurance Certificate. You can apply for this at one of the following: DDU (Dental Defence Union) or through Dental Protection. There are other suppliers of this type of insurance and we do-not endorse either provider nor accept any responsibility for their policies. Most of the providers do offer a special deal for EU Graduates’ first year in the UK so this should be relatively inexpensive.

  9. Assuming you now have been offered a job in England or Wales you will now need to apply for a PCT Performer Number to practice NHS Dentistry. You will need to attend an appointment the PCT in the area where you have been offered a job to complete all of the neccessary paperwork. You will need to take the following documents with you to the appointment.

    •  GDC Certificate
    • Indemnity Insurance Certificate
    • Passport
    • Language Certificate
    • Hepatitis B Immunity Certification
    • 2 Other Forms of Identification e.g. European Identity Card, Bank Statement at Current Address, Driving License, Birth Certificate.


  11. This process will take a number of weeks and dependent on your level of experience in your own country or where you qualified, you may also be required to meet additional criteria by either completing some Vocational Training to work within an NHS Dental Practice in the UK or a period of mentoring by a more experienced dentist before you are allowed to work independently within the NHS or you may just have to attend have a couple of courses. This will vary for PCT to LHB and from dentist to dentist. This period of application usually takes between 8 to 16 weeks. As part of the process a CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) Check will be conducted and this is normally the slowest part of the process. If you have no UK history you may have to provide a letter of goodstanding from your own country to proceed.

Once you have all of the above in place you can now begin working in an NHS practice. All EEA Dentists can work within a private practice once they have their GDC and Indemnity Insurance. All Non EEA Dentists must have their GDC, Indemnity and have completed their ORE.

Dependent on your UK Residency Status you may also have to contact the home office to secure a work permit. You can do this at either the Home Office website or the Gov website.