Qualifications and health service workforce issues after Brexit

The EU Directive on Professional Qualifications allows EU and UK citizens to have professional qualifications mutually recognised. This includes many professional health qualifications.

This Directive no longer applies to the UK, but the change will not affect you if you had:

  • a UK professional qualification recognised in Ireland before 31 December 2020
  • an Irish professional qualification recognised in the UK before 31 December 2020

This includes applications that were in the process of being recognised at the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020.

Regulated professional qualifications

Regulated professional qualifications are qualifications you need to have by law to access or pursue a regulated profession or to engage in regulated activities in a given country.

Qualification requirements for health professions regulated in Ireland are set and assessed by the Irish regulators.

Information on health professions regulated in Ireland is on the relevant regulator's website:

Applications for UK health and social care professional qualifications to be recognised in Ireland will now be processed as ‘third country’ applications. A third country is a country that is not a member of the EU. In a small number of cases, the process may take longer than is the case under the EU Directive.

If you qualified in the UK before Brexit, but have not had your professional qualifications recognised by the relevant authority, you should apply for recognition with the relevant Irish health authority.

More information can be found on the relevant authority or regulator’s website.

If you are studying in the UK for a qualification in a regulated profession

If you are currently studying in the UK, you may want to work in Ireland when you finish your studies. If you do, contact the Irish health regulators for information on qualification recognition through the third country route.

If you intend to study in the UK, with the intention to work in Ireland in an Irish regulated profession when you finish your studies, contact the relevant Irish regulator or the Department of Health for information on their qualification recognition requirements and processes.

Qualifications for non-regulated professions and occupations

Qualifications and occupations not listed in the European Union (Recognition of Professional Qualifications) Regulations 2017 are not affected by Brexit.

More information

Email any HSE-related Brexit questions to brexit@hse.ie.