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A Comprehensive Guide on How to Become an Foreign Nurse in Bahrain


The diverse cultures of the Kingdom of Bahrain make it an interesting and fascinating place to work at. The culture of the country varies from the cultures in Western countries, therefore prior to moving to the country, it is important that you read about the rules and regulations beforehand. If you are worried about being in a foreign country all alone, there are also many Filipino nurses who work in the country. Aside from that, the country also offers high salaries, and a wide range of job opportunities for aspiring foreign nurses.

About the Country

Bahrain is recognized for providing a great quality of life to its people, as it was recently placed among the top five countries in the world in an expat survey. Bahrain’s official religion is Islam, although due to foreign nationals making up a large portion of the population, the Muslims account for just 70 percent of the population. The Christian minority, on the other hand, constitutes around 14.5 percent of the population, making it the second largest religious group in the country.

The culture of the country varies in some ways from that of the Western culture. One of which is that the majority of the citizens in Bahrain are conservative. Even if religious tolerance is widespread in everyday life, it is critical that local and religious norms are respected. For instance, in public, foreigners, particularly western women, must dress appropriately. There are also rules governing how men and women should interact in public. One of which is that public displays of affection are deemed disrespectful, and are hence forbidden, especially during the holy month of Ramadan. In addition, similar to other Islamic countries, due to the Islamic law, local individuals are prohibited from alcohol consumption. It is legal for non-muslim individuals to consume alcohol, which may be bought from licensed establishments. However, drinking in public, as well as drunken behavior, is a serious violation. In fact, the country strictly prohibits drunk driving. 

If you choose to work in the country, the thought of having Filipinos with you in a foreign country could be comforting. With this, you could join the Philippine Nurses Association Bahrain Chapter, which is a group that aims “to enhance the image, unify and promote the welfare of the Filipino nurses in the Kingdom of Bahrain”. Due to the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Health Services Cooperation between the governments of Bahrain and the Philippines, there are many Filipino nurses in the country. This permits Bahraini nurses to undergo their medical training in the Philippines, and it also allows the recruitment of Filipino nurses to Bahrain.

Type of Nurses

In Bahrain, you may choose from a variety of nursing careers. The most common type of nurses in the country is the Registered Nurse (RN). However, if you decide to pursue post-nursing education, you may become a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS). 

Registered Nurse (RN)

Registered Nurses (RN) perform direct patient care, administering medications prescribed by the doctor, and educating their patients regarding important health conditions Aside from these, their other responsibilities include conducting physical examinations, documenting the medical history of patients, and monitoring their vital signs. 

Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)

Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) have the expertise and skills to identify any problems in the healthcare services. They also contribute to the design and implementation of treatments, as well as the assessment and evaluation, to further improve the quality of patient care.


According to the, nurses in Bahrain earn an average salary of 1,190 BHD (₱175,834.85) monthly. An entry level nurse earns an average of 560 BHD (₱82,745.81), while a senior level nurse earns an average salary of 1,880 BHD (₱277,789.52). As a nurse, your salary would vary based on the years of clinical experience that you have. For instance, a nurse with two years of experience would earn around 650 BHD (₱96,044.25) monthly, which is 38 percent less than a nurse with five year of experience. On the other hand, a nurse with 10 years of experience would earn approximately 1,270 BHD (₱187,655.68), which is 42 percent more than the salary of a nurse with only five years of experience.

Demand for Nurses

The demand for nurses in Bahrain is significantly lower as compared to other countries. Based on the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of national nurses in the country continues to increase, wherein as of 2018, around 62 percent of the nursing workforce in Bahrain is constituted by Bahrainis. The development in the nursing and midwifery education in the country has allowed their healthcare system to also improve, therefore not hiring as many foreign nurses as other countries do.


The hospitals in the Kingdom of Bahrain are classified into private and public hospitals. 

Private Hospitals

Some of the private hospitals in Bahrain are Stanford Medical Center, Awali Hospital, Al Kindi Hospital, Ibn Al Nafees Hospital, Dr. Salam Jibrel Medical Center, International Medical Centre W.L.L., Alsalam Specialist Hospital, and Dr Tariq Hospital

Public Hospitals

The public hospitals in Bahrain include the Salmaniya Medical Complex, Bahrain Defense Force – Royal Medical Services Hospital, and King Hamad University Hospital

In order to be able to work as a nurse in Bahrain, you must fulfill the following qualifications:

Educational Requirement

In order to be able to work as a nurse in Bahrain, you must have graduated from a degree in nursing that is equivalent to the standards of the country. The duration of the course must be within a minimum of 3.5 years. In addition, you must also have a valid nursing license issued by an institution that is recognized by Bahrain.


In order to take the required “The National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA) – Bahrain Prometric Examination”, you must have 2 years of work experience as a nurse. You must have worked in a setting that is licensed by the Professional Regulatory Licensing Authority in your country of origin.


Good Standing Certificate (GSC)

You must be able to provide a Good Standing Certificate (GSC), which is not older than six months at the time of licensure application. It must be issued by the Professional Regulatory and Licensing Authority of the country where you worked in. It is important to take note that the NHRA may require additional proof or conduct investigation if it is deemed necessary in order to verify your status of good conduct. You must also have no records of conviction with legal cases, or medical malpractice during your career. Otherwise, you will be placed under investigation.

Primary Source Verification

The documents that you provided will be verified from its primary or original source. Some of the documents include educational qualifications, certificate/s of experience, professional license, or other documents required by the NHRA.


The National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA) – Bahrain Prometric Examination

The National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA) requires medical practitioners, dental practitioners, nurses, and pharmacists to complete the (NHRA) – Bahrain Prometric Examination, in order to assess if you are fit to work as a healthcare professional in the country. This is to regulate the country’s healthcare system, and ensure that they provide safe and high quality healthcare services. With this, prior to being issued a license to practice in Bahrain, you must successfully complete the said exam, wherein you must obtain a minimum grade of 60% in order to pass the examination. 

Once you apply, your application will be sent to the NHRA, which will provide you with a distinct eligibility number, in order for you to be able to register for the prometric examination. The assigned number will be valid for four months from the issued date. You will be given a total of 2.5 hours to complete the exam. 

It is important to keep in mind that you may take the licensing examination four times in a row including earlier efforts as long as these attempts are made within three years following the first attempt. In addition, if you fail on your fourth try, you may have to undergo a re-training term of at least six months and submit a proof of completion. Only after the re-training period will you be allowed to retake the licensing examination, with a maximum of two attempts more, provided that you complete these attempts within two years from the completion of re-training. 

Study for the NHRA – Bahrain Prometric Examinations in advance to secure an excellent score. Make sure that you also prepare the necessary documents so that you do not encounter any delays in the application process. Once you have successfully submitted all your requirements, you are one step closer to becoming a nurse in Bahrain!


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