CORU (which apparently stands for Health and Social Care Professionals Council in Irish) is the regulatory body in charge of registration for most health professions in Ireland.
Akin to AHPRA in Australia or the HCPC in the UK, these are the guys responsible for ensuring that the high standards of the Irish health workforce are maintained.
What does CORU have to do with me?
If you want to work as a health professional in Ireland, you will need to be registered with CORU. If not you’re breaking the law.
How do I apply?
If you have an international qualification – that is, a qualification obtained outside of Ireland – becoming registered with CORU is a multi-stage process.
Step 1: Recognition of International Qualifications
Your professional qualifications will be assessed against the standards of proficiency required of Irish qualifications in your profession.
Once you have completed the application form, and provided all the required supporting documents, this review can take up to 4 months.
However, the first hurdle is actually providing all the correct documentation (as I learned the hard way in a very drawn out debacle involving a lot of too-ing and fro-ing via email). This is a looong form and these guys will not accept anything less than perfect. Don’t think you can get away with any short cuts – every t needs to be crossed and i dotted when it comes to submitting this part of the application.
Allow yourself a few months to get everything together.
Step 2: Application for Registration
If you pass the first step, and your international qualification and experience is considered up to standard, you are then allowed to apply for registration with CORU.
How much does it cost?
At the moment it costs €410 to apply for Recognition and €100 to apply for Registration.
How long did it take you?
I couldn’t tell you how many hours I spent completing the form, collecting the necessary documents, then submitting and re-submitting amendments to ensure all of the submission requirements were met.
Once my Application for Recognition file was considered complete on 11th June, my case was taken to the next CORU board meeting for assessment and officially approved on 23rd July (so about 6 weeks).
It was then time to apply for Registration for which I sent my last document on 7th January and was approved for addition to the Register on 2nd February (approximately 4 weeks).
This was without a doubt the most difficult registration process I’ve been through (and I’ve now done my fair share of applications in many different countries!). Ensure you’re up for the expense and the amount of effort/frustration you will undoubtedly endure – you REALLY have to have your heart set on working in Ireland to see this through to the end!
If you’re up for the challenge, follow the next links where I take you through the Recognition and Registration steps and provide you with tips based on my own personal experiences.
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