The claim that 700 Nigerian nurses in the UK were found by the National Health Service (NHS) to have faked their qualifications to work in the country has been confirmed false.
The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), a body that regulates the standards of about 780,000 nursing and midwifery professionals in the UK, said the allegations of fraud were not related to their qualifications but a computer-based test suspected to have been fraudulently influenced.
“No final decision has been made, and this does not relate to people’s original nursing and midwifery qualification,” the NMC said, according to a fact-checking by Reuters.
The NMC in a statement released last month, said it had uncovered widespread suspected exam fraud at the Yunnik Technologies Test Centre in Ibadan, Nigeria.
It said 48 professionals already on the NMC register and 669 applicants to the register were believed “more likely than not” to have fraudulently achieved their scores in a computer-based test (CBT).
An independent review panel will assess the 48 registered nurses suspected of fraud.
Another 467 registered nurses and midwives who took the CBT at Yunnik but who aren’t suspected of fraud, will still be required to retake the test.
An estimated 1,440 applicants from Yunnik not on the NMC register, both suspected and non-suspected, will also need to redo the CBT.
Following this, a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, alleged that the NHS found 700 Nigerian nurses had fake qualifications as they sat for an exam.
“Nigeria is considered as a ‘red list’ country for the recruitment of health professionals, meaning poaching of staff could endanger its own health and care system,” the poster stated.
According to the UK government’s code of practice, Nigeria is indeed on a “red list” as one of 52 countries that the UK does not actively recruit from.
This aligns with the World Health Organization’s (WHO) support and safeguards list to protect countries with healthcare staff shortages.
Recruitment is only allowed when personnel apply directly or through a mutual agreement.