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English test norms eased for UK nursing applicants

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PHILSTAR

THE British Council said nurses from the Philippines seeking work in the UK will be allowed in with lower scores in a language proficiency test necessary for them to get into the region.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has revised its minimum score in one of the tests conducted by the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) for overseas workers seeking work in the UK.

“Nurses and midwives wishing to work in the UK will still be required to achieve a minimum overall score of 7.0 in IELTS. However, a 6.5 score in the Writing section of the test will be accepted alongside a 7.0 score in each of the Reading, Listening and Speaking sections of the test,” the British Council said in a statement on Wednesday.

The new Writing minimum score took effect on Dec. 5.

British Council Country Director Pilar Aramayo Prudencio said that the UK organization will continue to extend assistance and provide resources for Filipino health workers to help them accomplish the IELTS minimum scores.

“We look forward to continuing to provide support and guidance to nurses and midwives looking to work in the UK, so that they may achieve the IELTS score requirements announced by the NMC,” she said.

According to data from the Philippines Overseas Labor Office (POLO), nearly 95% of Filipino workers deployed to the UK last year are in the nursing profession. — Gillian M. Cortez