What is a person who graduated from nursing studies in Ukraine and worked in the profession, and would like to continue working as a nurse after coming to Poland to do?

The special act introduced significant facilitations in taking up the profession of a nurse in Poland for Ukrainian citizens.

Pursuant to the provisions of the special act, from February 24, 2022, for a period of 28 months, regardless of the duration of the epidemic threat or epidemic state, a citizen of Ukraine who has obtained the qualifications of a nurse outside the territory of the European Union Member States, i.e. in Ukraine, consent to practice as a nurse may be granted and a conditional right to practice as a nurse may be granted, provided that certain conditions are met:

  • has full legal capacity;
  • her state of health allows her to practice as a nurse or midwife;
  • shows an impeccable ethical attitude;
  • has a nurse or midwife diploma issued in a country other than a European Union Member State.

The possession of a nurse’s diploma should be understood as first and second degree diplomas in nursing obtained in Ukraine, i.e. bachelor’s degree, magister, because only such documents are subject to the normal procedure of nostrification, i.e. recognition in Poland as equivalent to the Polish nursing school graduation certificate (according to the information of the Supreme Chamber of Nurses and Midwives).

Facilitating access to the nursing profession in the case of Ukrainian citizens includes, inter alia, on waiver of the requirement of knowledge of the Polish language.

The key facilitation, however, is that there is no requirement to legalize diplomas or duplicates. There is also no requirement to have an apostille on these documents – this means that it is enough to present the diploma (or its duplicate) in the form in which it was issued in Ukraine, without additional actions confirming the authenticity of the document and the signatures of Ukrainian authorities.

A citizen of Ukraine who meets the above requirements may obtain consent to practice the profession independently if she has at least 3 years of professional experience as a nurse, obtained in the period of 5 years immediately preceding the date of submitting the application for consent to practice in the profession in Poland. Even in the case of obtaining permission to practice the profession of a nurse independently, a citizen of Ukraine for the first 3 months of employment in the profession in the territory of the Republic of Poland will practice the profession under the supervision of another nurse.

In the case of Ukrainian citizens who do not meet the condition of three years of professional experience gained in the last 5 years, consent may be granted to practice under the supervision of another nurse.

Permission to practice as a nurse is granted by the Minister of Health. In her decision, she will specify whether a citizen of Ukraine can practice the profession independently or only under the supervision of another nurse. The decision of the Minister of Health opens the way for the District Council of Nurses and Midwives to grant a Ukrainian citizen a conditional right to practice the profession of a nurse for a period of 5 years.

Note – a citizen of Ukraine who has obtained the right to practice is obliged to report to the minister of health in which treatment entity and for what period she was employed, within 7 days from the date of commencement of the provision of health services in this entity. Failure to submit the application may constitute the basis for withdrawing the consent to practice in Poland!