The Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria, on Wednesday, announced revised guidelines and requirements for individuals applying for certificate verification with foreign nursing boards/councils.

Applicants are now required by the council to have at least two years of post-qualification experience from the date of issuance of their permanent practising licence.

The revised guidelines for verification of certificates was signed by the Registrar/Secretary General of NMCN, Dr. Faruk Abubakar, and posted on the council’s X page on Wednesday.

It read, “Applicants are to visit https://licence.nmcn.gov.ng/ and login to initiate verification application by clicking on the verification application link.

“A non-refundable fee per application shall be paid for verification to Foreign Boards of Nursing as specified on the portal. This shall cover the cost of courier services to the applicant’s institution(s) of training, place of work and Foreign Board.

“Eligible applicants must have a minimum of two years post-qualification experience from the date of issuance of permanent practising licence. Any application with provisional licence shall be rejected outrightly.

“The council shall request a letter of good standing from the Chief Executive Officer of applicant’s place(s) of work and the last nursing training institution attended and responses on these shall be addressed directly to the Registrar/CEO, Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria. Please note that council shall not accept such letter(s) through the applicant.”

In addition to the mentioned requirements, NMCN now mandates that applicants possess an active practising licence that is valid for at least six more months.

However, the revised guidelines have sparked a wave of anger on social media.

Nurses and health workers have condemned it as a clear infringement on basic human rights.

Below are some of the reactions on X:

Sir Dickson wrote, “This is absolutely ridiculous @Nigeria_NMC There is no where in the world that this is done. You’re deliberately frustrating the nurses under your body. On what basis are you demanding two years work experience before they can verify their certificates? Why is verification taking minimum of six months? Six months!! What are you verifying?

detola wrote, ” You’re a shameless body. @Nigeria_NMC, your nurses are barely feeding with the meagre salary they are collecting. You are not actively challenging that neither are you countering quackery but you’re flexing muscles on nurses seeking career progression.”

Nurse Danie wrote, “We were taught advocacy in nursing school but it’s a shame that our own highest nursing body is not advocating for nurses.

“You want to keep nurses in Nigeria for two years against their will and you didn’t advocate for better salary for them?”

Dr Bishop wrote, “This is very unfair and draconian on nurses. Same nurses that are poorly paid and the system refuse to adequately upskill despite so much responsibility and little to no authority.

“Nurses are taking steps on their own to improve themselves but @Nigeria_NMC wants to remain in the stone age. Every doctor should join and oppose this, otherwise they will come for doctors next.”

PeterObi’sLastDaughter wrote: “Aren’t we supposed to be moving forward? Verification that used to take two weeks is now sjx months?

“Which one is two years post qualification experience again? Indirectly, a newly qualified nurse can’t apply for verification.”

Earlier on Wednesday, nurses and midwives in the country lamented the deactivation of the NMCN verification portal since December 2023.

The nurses, who were interviewed by our correspondent, claimed that the council’s decision to deactivate the portal was a deliberate move to impede their ability to explore new career prospects.

The NMCN is the sole corporate, legal, administrative, and legislative organisation tasked with carrying out certain duties on behalf of the federal government to guarantee that the general public receives safe and effective nursing and midwifery care.

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