In Finland, the healthcare system offers services or universal healthcare to everyone residing in the country. Finnish public healthcare is considered good quality, and their healthcare system focuses on disease prevention and health promotion.

The nursing profession is in high demand, especially because of what has happened in previous years and the constant need for nurses for elderly homes all over the country. The Finnish Nurses Association, a professional organization for registered nurses, currently has more than 50,000 members, including public health nurses, midwives, and paramedics. This just shows the growing population of nurses in the country.

Nurses all around the country take an active role in contributing to providing solutions for healthcare issues faced by Finland. Find out how much nurses make and the steps to become a nurse in Finland.

How Much Are Nurses Paid in Finland?

Nurses in Finland earn between €3,200 – €8,700 monthly. This salary reflects the important role that nurses play in the healthcare system. Additionally, nurses in Finland are required to have a high level of education, with many pursuing advanced degrees in nursing to stay up-to-date with the latest medical technologies and practices. This dedication to education and professional development is what makes the nursing profession in Finland so respected and vital to the healthcare system.

Learn More: Cost of Studying and Living in Finland

How to Become a Nurse in Finland

Step 1. Obtain a qualified nursing degree at a Finnish University of Applied Sciences

To become a nurse in Finland, students must receive and finish their degree at one of the Finnish University of Applied Sciences schools that offer nursing programs. A bachelor’s degree in nursing takes three and a half years to complete.

International students can either submit their application through a joint application or a separate application. If you are planning to apply via joint application, you need to know the exact details of application requirements and deadlines. As for separate applications, you have to directly apply to your chosen university.

Two Finnish universities offer Bachelor of Healthcare in Nursing degrees, these are Metropolia University of Applied Sciences and Satakunta University of Applied Sciences.

See Also: Best Nursing Schools in Finland

Step 2. Achieve a proficiency level in the Finnish language

Healthcare professionals must acquire the necessary and sufficient language proficiency (oral and written) to be able to perform their duties. Some universities require students to acquire a necessary proficiency level in the Finnish language before even starting their clinical practice, which usually starts either after 6 or 12 months of your studies. However some nursing schools in Finland do not require this proficiency this early; rather, they will arrange their clinical practices in English.

Healthcare professionals must obtain a Civil Service Language Proficiency Certificate or a National Certificate of Language Proficiency issued in Finland. To acquire the Civil Service Language Proficiency Certificate, this requires the applicant to at least have a “satisfactory level” skill while for the National Certificate of Language Proficiency, the applicant must have or pass the intermediate level test (levels 3-4) in the skills area.

But if one does not have any of these two certificates, they must at least have any of the following:

  • A certificate from a Finnish school certifying and showing a passing grade for Finnish or Swedish as their mother tongue or second language
  • A statement from your employer certifying your language proficiency (including your employment details, job duties, and evaluation of written and oral language proficiency)
  • A maturity test is taken in Finnish or Swedish as part of a university degree

Learn More: Language Tests Needed in Finland for International Students

Step 3. Apply for licensing

The practice of the nursing profession is restricted to licensed professionals only. People who practice nursing without any license may be sentenced to a fine or imprisonment.

To become a nurse in Finland, applicants should apply for licensing in Valvira (National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health). An applicant should follow the specific application instructions if you intend to work in Finland. Upon application, Valvira grants the right to practice as a licensed or authorized professional and allows the use of the title of a healthcare professional.

See Also: How to Become a Nurse in Norway

Step 4. Prepare all the requirements needed for the application

The applicant must be ready to submit all of the following requirements for his or her application for licensing:

  • An identification card or any document certifying the applicant’s identity
  • Bachelor’s degree certificate or diploma
  • Certificate of language proficiency. (Please refer to step number 2)
  • Certificate verifying your right to practice the profession such as a Certificate of Current Professional Status
  • Certificate issued by an authority stating your professional qualifications

Check Also: How to Become a Nurse in Denmark

Step 5. Pay the necessary fees

These fees are paid by applicants who want to become a nurse in Finland, whether they are accepted or rejected. All decisions shall be given in Finnish or Swedish. For applicants who were trained in the EU/EEA area, the maximum processing time after receiving all the documents in Valvira is four months. As for those applicants who were trained outside the EU/EEA area, processing time may take longer because the documents submitted still need to be sent to a Finnish Institute of Education for validation of the qualifications that are needed to practice the profession. For any missing documents, a notification will be sent to the applicant within 30 days of receiving the initial documents submitted. Missing documents will be followed up for the compliance and completion of the requirements.

Learn About: How to Study in Finland for Free

Step 6. Wait for the decision

The decision on the practice of the profession will be issued in Finnish or Swedish. The processing period for the applicants is as follows:

  • Healthcare professionals who have finished their degree and training in Finland usually take 30 days to process their application
  • People who are from another EU/EEA member state applying to study in Finland take at least 30 days of processing from the date the documents are received
  • For applicants who have completed their training in an EU/EEA member state and want to practice the nursing profession in Finland, processing time takes about 3 to 4 months
  • For applicants who have completed their training outside the EU/EEA member state, the processing of their application takes at least four months

See Also: How to Become a Nurse in Sweden

The processing of the licensing is on a first-come, first-serve basis. This is to ensure that all applicants are treated equally regarding where they studied and finished their degree and training.


Finland’s healthcare system is known for its good quality, disease prevention, and health promotion focus. Besides providing numerous job opportunities, nurses are also well-compensated in the country. If you are interested in becoming a nurse in Finland, you can follow the steps enumerated above to achieve your dream.


We hope that you found this article on the steps to becoming a nurse in Finland informative and helpful.  You can find more information on different Finnish universities and scholarship opportunities on the Study in Finland! Feel free to also check out the Available Programs for International Students and learn more about studying abroad.

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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