The Irish health and medical professions have a very similar structure to those in the United Kingdom. In several instances, there was a single regulatory body prior to Irish independence. In the areas in which there was specific statutory regulation prior to each of the UK and Ireland acceding to the European Communities in 1973 such as in medicine and dentistry, the older Irish and UK legislation specifically recognised qualifications in the other jurisdiction.
The mutual recognition of qualifications was formalised in the context of EU membership and specific EU legislation in respect of qualifications in the medical and health sector. Given the very close ties and long-standing free movement between health professionals in the UK and Ireland and, the continued existence of the Common Travel Area then even in the event of no continuing mutual recognition arrangements under an EU UK agreement, it is virtually certain that Ireland and the UK would recognise each other’s health and medical sector qualifications on a bilateral basis on the same, or much the same basis, as at present.
Health Care Professions
Doctors are regulated in Ireland by the Medical Council a statutory body. Education is provided in universities and teaching hospitals. Dentists are regulated by a statutory body the Dental Council, with a similar structure.
Nurses are regulated by the Nursing Board which is a statutory body.Pharmacists are regulated in Ireland by a statutory body, the reconstituted Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland.
The statutory Health and Social Care Professional Council regulates clinical biologists, dieticians, medical scientists, occupational therapists, orthopaedists, physiotherapists, psychologists radiographers, social care workers, social workers and speech and language therapists.
In each case, the nature of the roles and the underlying professional education and training requirements are very similar to those in the UK so that qualifications should generally be readily recognised.