The GDC is ready with new rules and fees for international registration from 9 March


  Posted by: Dental Design      6th March 2024

The General Dental Council (GDC) has agreed new rules from 9 March for registration of internationally-qualified dentists and dental care professionals, and a new application processing fee for overseas-qualified dentists who want to sit the Overseas Registration Exam (ORE).

The application processing fee has been set, in line with the regulator’s fees policy, at a level that covers the cost of processing only, which is when the GDC carries out checks on qualifications, character, clinical experience and English language competence before adding someone to the ORE candidate list.

The GDC proposed introducing an ORE application processing fee in its consultation on international routes to registration for dentists and dental care professionals, a suggestion that was supported by a majority of respondents.

ORE candidates currently pay an examination fee for each sitting of the ORE, including any retakes. The GDC will be holding examination fees at current levels until the end of this year, under transitional arrangements which end on 31 December 2024 around the time that the current ORE contracts end. These examination fees were set at their current levels nine years ago.

New examination fees will be in place from 1 January 2025 based on recovery of current costs. It may be necessary to revise examination fees when new contracts are in place in 2025 to ensure that the revised fees align with new contract arrangements. 

In the past year, the GDC has established new rules for the registration of internationally-qualified dentists and dental care professionals, tripled the number of ORE Part 1 places, increased capacity in the ORE Part 2 by a third and gathered evidence from stakeholders to inform the future delivery of effective, robust and timely exams. Public safety and confidence in dental professions remains the GDC’s primary concern. 

A procurement exercise for new ORE contracts is about to begin with early engagement with potential suppliers underway in what is now a new market, made possible as a result of the legislation changes last year which removed the previous financial and supplier constraints.

Gurvinder Soomal, Interim Chief Executive Officer and Registrar, said: “The aim of these reforms is to create a modern system of international registration which is fair to applicants, efficient to deliver, and above all is rigorous in protecting patients. 

“This marks an important step on the way to a comprehensive framework for international registration, but there is still more to do with a complex combination of legislative, contractual and operational changes needed to support the current and future demand for registration.”

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