More health and care roles to the shortage occupation list

The Home Office has added more health and care roles to the shortage occupation list, view the full list.

9 March 2021

On 4 March the UK government announced changes to the immigration rules designed to make it easier for overseas health and care staff to be recruited to the UK.

A number of health and care roles have been added to the Shortage Occupation List (SOL) including:

  • pharmacists
  • laboratory technicians
  • senior care workers
  • nursing assistants
  • health services and public health managers and directors
  • residential, day and domiciliary care managers
  • health professionals not elsewhere classified, such as audiologists.

Roles which feature on the SOL give people an advantage in obtaining a skilled worker visa.

A role on the SOL is worth 20 of the 70 points required to obtain a skilled worker visa in the new points-based immigration system. Combined with the mandatory criteria – having an acceptable standard of English, an offer from a licensed sponsor and the required RQF level 3 or above skill level, which are worth 50 points – will ensure people in these roles reach the 70 points.

This is part of a number of changes made under the immigration rules including confirming the graduate route will launch from Thursday 1 July, updating the skilled worker visa going rate to include a minimum hourly rate, and further building on the world-leading global talent route.


NHS Employers and the Cavendish Coalition submitted evidence to the Migration Advisory Committee in May 2020 as part of a commission to review the Shortage Occupation List. This review took place a few months before the implementation of the new points-based immigration system.