Return to practice

If you have previously been a registered health professional and wish to return to your profession, then you may need to undertake a return to practice programme. NUH  provides a range of support to help staff return to clinical practice.

We are also working with Health Education England (HEE). Depending on your profession, HEE may be able to offer financial and academic support to health professionals wishing to undertake a return to practice scheme.

If you are a Healthcare Scientist or AHP click here for more information.

Return to Practice Engagement Events

Discover what returning to practice might look like for you...

Have you previously practiced as a registered nurse and been out of practice due to a career break, caring responsibilities or due to a change in personal circumstances?

Would you like to return to nursing? Look no further!

NUH have launched an exciting, fully funded, and bespoke Return to Practice Programme. Now is the time to consider joining the NMC register.

Join the event for information about the Test of Competence, funding, stories from our most recent Return to Practice nurses and bespoke support to enable you to get your NMC pin back.

To book your space, please visit our Eventbrite page here.

For further information please contact

Return to Pracitce FAQ

NUH’s Return to Practice programme enables nurses who have a lapsed NMC registration to re-enter the register. Applicants will be employed on a six month ‘experienced pre pin’ nurse contract. Within this contract, nurses will receive supernumerary period in their clinical area and training to complete Part 2 of the NMC Test of Competence (ToC). Once applicants have been successful, they will be readmitted to the NMC register and receive their pin.


What is the Test of Competence?

The test of competence is made up of two parts:

  • Part 1: a multiple-choice computer based theoretical test known as the CBT
  • Part 2: a practical test known as the OSCE

The test of competence is designed to test the candidate’s knowledge and understanding across all areas of nursing or midwifery care.

Please see the following link for further information on the NMC test of competence.


How do I apply?

  1. Email the practice education team ( and we can discuss and support your application further. Alternatively, you can attend one of the Breakfast Careers Clubs.
  2. Apply for band 5 vacancies. These are advertised continuously throughout the year.
  3. If shortlisted and successful at interview you will start as an ‘experienced pre pin’ nurse contract at band 3 for six months


Who can undertake the RTP Programme?

Any nurse who has previously had an NMC pin number but doesn’t currently meet the readmission requirements.

If you have worked 450 hours in the last three years or 750 hours in the past five years you do not need to complete the RTP programme but can reapply to the register.


Would a long career break prevent me from joining the register?

Not at all. Please contact the Practice Education team for further advice. We understand what a big decision this can be and we are happy to chat with you further.


Is it only for adult registered nurses?

At the moment, NUH can only support adult registered nurses.


Do I need to have a degree in nursing?

No, you can join the programme as long as you have previously registered with the NMC as a registered nurse.


How long is the programme?

The contract is for 6 months. During this time you will have the opportunity to refresh your skills under direct supervision of a registered nurse. The clinical area will support you in orientating you back into working as a registered nurse and help regain your confidence.

You will be booked on to NUH Practice Education Team facilitated sessions such as, Acute Care Skills Course and Medicine Safety training within your 6 months contract. You will also be eligible for regular clinical supervision. You will also receive training within this time to take the Part 2 test of competence (OSCE).


Is it full time?

We have full time and part time opportunities within the Trust. Patterns of work can be discussed and agreed on an individual basis with the clinical area.


Where will I be working?

Your clinical area will be at either QMC or City hospital.  The training programme will be a mixture of virtual and face to face sessions at City Hospital.


What will happen afterwards?

Upon successful completion of the Part 1 and Part 2 NMC ToC, you will be readmitted to the NMC register and receive your pin. You can then continue working in your clinical area as a permanent Band 5 Registered Nurse (RN). On your first day as a Band 5 RN, you will attend a preceptorship induction and start your return to practice preceptorship period.