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Nurses are essential healthcare workers and without them, clinics and hospitals would not be able to function. They provide essential care for patients by assisting doctors and other medical professionals.

In South Africa, there are many types of nursing careers to choose from and you can continue to specialise and study further during the course of your career. Some types of nursing careers require studying for a degree while others require shorter studies.

Required Qualifications

Depending on the specific career path you wish to take, you will typically need the following qualifications to  become a nurse in South Africa.

  1. Certificate (National Senior Certificate s issued by UMALUSI, with the relevant subject combination; or an equivalent international qualification that allows access to study towards a Diploma qualification)
  2. Certificate (Higher Certificate in Nursing; 1-Year Study) On completion, you register with the SANC as a Nursing Auxiliary.
  3. Diploma (Diploma in Nursing; 3 Years) On completion, you register with the South African Nursing Council as a General Nurse.
  4. Bachelor’s Degree (Bachelor of Nursing 4-Year programme at a university. On completion, you register with the SANC as a Professional Nurse and Midwife.

Entry requirements may differ between the institutions. Here is a list of accredited educational institutions offering  the Higher Certificate and Diplomas in nursing qualifications from the South African nursing council.

Recommended school subjects:

Employment Opportunities

Nursing is an in-demand job in South Africa and nurses often work in the following places

  • Public and private hospitals and clinics
  • Schools
  • Universities
  • Pharmacies
  • Government institutions
  • Research laboratories
  • Nursing homes and private home care

Further information:


Related University Degrees

Of course, you can continue studying for postgraduate degrees in nursing after completion of your Bachelor’s degree. The various educational institutions have many options for further studies.

Related Qualifications and Skills Programs

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