Blogs > Visas

How to get a CoS for your Health and Care, Skilled Worker Visa

  • February 08, 2022

Once a hospital has agreed to employ an overseas Doctor, they will need to allocate a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to that doctor in order for them to make their Skilled Worker Visa application.

What is a CoS?

A CoS contain a reference number which an international doctor can use to apply to enter or remain in the UK. The reference number certifies that the Doctor meets the requirements of the visa route, including skill level and salary.

Reform of the UK points-based immigration system saw the skilled worker route replace the Tier 2 visa. The removal of the cap on Skilled Worker Visas effectively rendered the restricted CoS redundant and thus the two types of CoS were revised.

The new types of CoS: defined and undefined.

1. Undefined – For individuals switching to the skilled worker category from within the UK or applying under one of the other visa routes from within the UK or overseas.

2. Defined – For individuals applying from outside the UK, sponsors (The NHS Trust) will apply using details of the specific job and salary.

How the hospital applies for a CoS:

1. A doctor interviews a post, a job offer is made, and the pre-employment checks are completed

2. The hospital will then apply online to the UK Home Office Visa and Immigration Office (UKVI) for a certificate

3. When the CoS is granted, the hospital will assign it to the doctor, and they will have three months to use the CoS

5. The doctor applies for their Skilled Worker Visa

6. The doctor’s Skilled worker visa application is successful and entry clearance granted

Our Advice

  • If you are a doctor waiting for your CoS – do not worry about whether your job is on the shortage occupation list or whether your salary is high enough. The Tier 2 visa cap lift means that ALL doctors CoS’ will be approved, regardless of those issues.
  • To speed up the ability to apply for your CoS – have all of your documents in order. This includes:
    -Proof of address x 2
    -References to cover the last three years of employment x 2
    -Police Clearance Certificate
    -Certificate of Good Standing

Any questions? Email [email protected] and we will be happy to help.

Relocating to the UK

If you are an international doctor who would like to relocate to the UK, email your CV to [email protected] and we can support you in securing an NHS post and on your journey to relocate to the UK.

Are you a member of our Facebook group? When you join IMG Advisor, you join a community of doctors all looking to relocate to the UK and join the NHS. We post a series of blogs and vlogs to the group each day. We will also be on hand to answer all of your relocation queries.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel! We have over 60 videos covering everything you need to know about relocating to the UK and joining the NHS.

Listen to BDI Resourcing on the go with IMG Advisor the Podcast! You can listen to us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Buzzsprout. We have a number of episodes with tips and advice on relocating to the UK and the routes you can take to achieve this.


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