Ever since the inception of the NHS in 1948 and the arrival of HMS Windrush, international nurses have been vital to the health and care system in the UK.

Just like we provide world-class care for our patients, at Royal Papworth Hospital we are proud to provide the highest quality support for internationally-trained nurses who join our hospital.

In recognition of this excellence, we have been awarded a NHS Pastoral Care Quality Award. 

Royal Papworth made my transition from India to the UK so smooth. From the moment I arrived I felt welcomed and cared for.
Critical care education sister

The safe arrival, induction, and provision of support for new people joining the NHS workforce is our number one priority for international recruitment.

The award demonstrates our commitment to staff wellbeing throughout recruitment, arrival, onboarding and preparation for OSCE exams, as well as ongoing support with NMC registration. 

Thank you for considering applying for a post with us at Royal Papworth Hospital. We warmly welcome candidates from overseas. You can apply directly to our hospital by completing an application on one of our job vacancy adverts.

Following your application, these are then shortlisted by staff within the respective areas to assess your suitability for the role. If you are successful at this stage, we will invite you to further assess your knowledge and skills. 

We want to ensure that your interview experience is a positive one. You will have questions asked by some of our team, but we do this in a supportive way to ensure we get the best out of you and you can get a sense of the values of our organisation.

Moving countries and uprooting your life is one of the hardest things you can do. We want to ensure you are fully supported throughout this process. 

It can be hard to know what to pack and bring with you.

To help with that, we provide all overseas staff (recruited directly from overseas) with bath towels, bedding and pillows, cutlery, plates, bowls, cooking pots, a mobile phone SIM card and other fundamentals to help get you set-up for life in the UK.

We will support you in setting up a UK bank account to ensure you have a means of being paid once you arrive.  

We also have a comprehensive welcome guide which tells you about life in the area as well as what to expect from work and your pay.

We are very fortunate to have our own staff accommodation based at Waterbeach, which is eight miles from Cambridge. A bus service runs between the accommodation multiple times each day at a rate of £2 each way. 

Your accommodation at Waterbeach will be a single room with shared bathroom, kitchen and communal spaces. The bedrooms contain a bed, desk, wardrobe and a small set of drawers. 

For when you are not at work, there are shops and amenities in Waterbeach which are set out in the welcome guide. You can also get a direct train to London, which takes about 45 minutes.  

As part of our benefits package of joining Royal Papworth Hospital as an internationally recruited nurse, ODP or radiographer (all at band 5) we make a contribution towards your deposit for the accommodation and one month’s rent.

Monthly rent is currently £450/month which includes all utility bills and Wi-Fi. We are fortunate to be able to offer one-year tenancy agreements which helps you to get settled here. 

To help you settle into life in the UK, you will have an initial two-week period to get adjusted and learn your surroundings.

During this period, you will be paid and we will help you to open a UK bank account, attend occupational health appointments, and collect biometric residency permits. 

We will arrange taxis to pick you up and bring you back from these essential visits, again to ease the burden on you.

During this period of settling in, it is a good chance to meet your fellow new arrivals as well as meet previous cohorts who have subsequently passed their OSCE exam. 

You’ll meet our OSCE training lead, Matt Achurra, as well as have contact from the clinical area in which you will be working.

Our OSCE training lead, Matt Achurra, is an expert in OSCE training. Matt is an overseas recruit himself so he fully understands the transition you will go through.

We are proud of our OSCE training programme and have a 100% pass rate. We utilise the different test centres around the country to ensure you undertake your OSCE within the first 12 weeks of arrival. 

We will arrange your OSCE examination date, travel and accommodation for your OSCE exam. The cost of your first attempt examination, travel, and accommodation is covered within your generous benefits package.

At Royal Papworth, we are all invested in wanting you to pass your OSCE exam and you will feel the support of the whole Trust in achieving this objective.


Case study

Brincy Bovas, sister in critical care education

I joined Royal Papworth Hospital in November 2020, amidst the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Renowned as one of the leading cardiothoracic hospitals, Royal Papworth was an ideal choice for me due to its diverse cases and abundant learning opportunities. The hospital's core values of compassion, collaboration and excellence deeply resonated with my own professional ethos and personal aspirations.

Moving to a new country presented its own set of anxieties and challenges. Leaving behind my friends and family was undoubtedly difficult, and I had to adjust to the unfamiliar British weather and cuisine. Adapting to a new work environment was another hurdle, especially since I transitioned from a paper-based system in India to a computerised one in the UK. Navigating these changes initially felt overwhelming.

Brincy wearing a blue nurses uniform, smiling in a hospital corridor.

However, Royal Papworth Hospital made my transition remarkably smooth and supportive. From the moment I arrived, I felt welcomed and cared for. The hospital arranged for chauffeurs to pick us up from the airport and provided initial accommodation and essential supplies for our quarantine period. Additionally, the generous £500 settling-in allowance greatly eased the financial strain of moving. The support extended to practical matters as well: the hospital assisted us in setting up bank accounts, obtaining our Biometric Residence Permits (BRP), and finding suitable housing.

I have attended international conferences in Portugal and British conferences in Wales, completed a critical care course, and have recently been promoted to my new role where I can contribute to the development of other nurses.  

To other international nurses considering joining Royal Papworth, my message is clear: this is a place where you will not only grow professionally but also feel genuinely supported and valued. The hospital's commitment to staff well-being and development is exceptional. Embrace the opportunity, knowing that Royal Papworth Hospital is a beacon of excellence and compassion that will help you flourish in your nursing career

Training for non-EU nurses

If you join us as an overseas nurse from outside the EU, we offer support to help you prepare for the NMC part-two Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) test. 

We have a dedicated OSCE support programme which includes an eight-day study programme providing theory, practical and simulations focused on the clinical skills tested during the exam.

Teaching is provided by senior nursing staff in our education team and is also supported by registered nurses who have previously passed their OSCE exam. As an OSCE faculty we provide professional knowledge and experiences to enhance learning and preparation, as well as two mock exams.

For candidates working in specialist area such as theatres, cath labs and critical care, clinical insights of the ward areas will also be provided. We will liaise with your preceptor and line manager to identify any challenges in your clinical area and help you gain experience outside of the classroom setting.

Once you have passed the OSCE exam, you will join our preceptorship programme to help you build your skills and confidence as a registered nurse here at Royal Papworth Hospital. 

Four people standing outside on grass, with an apartment block behind them.

We offer an extensive benefits package to help international nurses settle in the UK

Contact us 

If you would like to enquire about international nursing opportunities at Royal Papworth Hospital, please email our nursing recruitment team.