How to get a DHA License for a Nursing Assistant

Aug 01, 2023

If you are looking to work in Dubai as a nursing assistant, you will need to obtain your DHA license in order to do so legally.

Within the emirate of Dubai, the healthcare profession is overseen and regulated by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA), who will be the authoritative body to grant you a license to work as a nurse, nursing assistant or similar.

The DHA license is obtained in a similar way for most healthcare roles, however there are some differences to be aware of. Although the responsibilities of a nursing assistant are not the same as a registered nurse, you will still require a DHA license to work.

In order to make sure you correctly follow the process, here is a full guide on everything you will need and the steps to take to become a licensed nursing assistant in Dubai.


What is a DHA license?

The DHA license is the official and confirmed approval that a healthcare worker fulfils the requirements for the job role they wish to practice.

You cannot work as an official healthcare professional in Dubai without this. The DHA license is also only valid in Dubai, with other licenses in place for the other emirates.


Understanding Dubai Health Authority (DHA) License Requirements

The first step is to make sure you have the correct qualifications to apply for a license as a nursing assistant.

The qualifications for a nursing assistant are as follows:

  •  Diploma in Nursing (or above) from recognized institute. 
  • At least two years of relevant work experience

You should be able to prove your diploma through an official educational certificate from the institution you studied in. Your two years of experience should also be credible, and you will need to submit official proof of this.

It is also essential that you have a good level of English, as that is the language you will be given further testing in.


DHA Licensing Process for a Nursing Assistant

If you looking to find a nursing assistant job in the UAE you will need your DHA License, and there are a clear set of steps you need to complete.

This will include registration, an examination and submitting a range of official documentation to prove your experience.

According to Ministry of Health and Prevention, you are exempt from sitting the exam if you are one of the following:

  • UAE National
  • Graduate of Universities inside the UAE
  • HAAD/DHA License Holder
  • An applicant that has a license from US, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Canada, Australia, and South Africa.

How to apply for the DHA exam and get your license as a nursing assistant

There are a series of steps you will need to follow to apply for the DHA exam, and it is extremely important to follow these exactly in order to get your license as a nursing assistant.


Step 1 – Set up a Sheryan Account

The Sheryan system is a portal on the DHA website that is used to manage license applications for both healthcare workers and facilities.

You will need this to complete the next steps, including tasks like your self-assessment, and to upload your documents.

Setting up an account on the portal is very simple and requires you to register your details and basic information. From there, you should select the option for an ‘Individual Home’ as your default page, which will then allow you to access all of the Health Licensing Services.

If you have any questions while using your Sheryan account, the portal has a built-in virtual assistant chat feature which should be able to help you.


Step 2 – Confirm you are eligible for DHA License

As previously mentioned, to be a nursing assistant in Dubai, you will require:

  • A diploma or higher in Nursing from a recognized institution
  • At least two years of relevant work experience

Once you have set up a Sheryan account, you will then be guided to answer a self-assessment on the DHA website which will ask you a series of questions.

This assessment will then explain whether or not you are eligible to have a DHA License as a Nursing Assistant and if you meet the requirements to work in a licensed facility.

After completing the assessment, if the tool states you are “not eligible” and you believe this is incorrect, you can apply for a Review Registration Eligibility of your qualifications.


Step 3 – Submit your relevant documents

If you are starting a new registration and an application to get your DHA license as a nursing assistant, you will need to supply the following documentation:

  • Passport and UAE Visa
  • High School Diploma/Pre-degree
  • Nursing Degree Certificate
  • Nursing License/Registration in home country
  • Transcript of Records for Nursing or Midwifery degree
  • Experience Certificate
  • HAAD/DHA License, if applicable,
  • Previous Dataflow report, if applicable
  • Recent Good Standing Certificate
  • Valid Resuscitation Certificate (BLS or ACLS)
  • Job Offer Letter, if HAAD or DHA License transfer

Submitting your documents is done through a portal called Dataflow, which you can access from the registration page of your Sheryan account.

From there you will encounter a verification fees page, which will ask you to make a payment before processing your documents. From there your case will be completed within 24 working days.


Step 4 – Pay the DHA License Exam Fee

There are no charges for nursing assistants completing the initial self-assessment test on the Sheryan portal.

However, there is a charge called a registration/credentialing fee following the self-assessment, which is AED200 for all healthcare professionals.

Once you have paid the fee, your application will be processed and reviewed.


Step 5 – Wait for Primary Source Verification

Primary Source Verification is what runs checks on your educational certificates and credentials to ensure you are qualified to have a DHA license.

This process is completed so it is absolutely certain that healthcare workers have the qualifications they claim from their home country or elsewhere.


Step 6 – Take the DHA License Exam

The DHA exam is now completed by all healthcare professionals who want to work in Dubai. It’s designed to cover all basic areas of medicine and will require some revision and preparation.

You will have already established whether or not you have the experience required for the DHA exam through your initial self-assessment. If you have been informed you must sit it, then it is a mandatory requirement in order to obtain your DHA License.

The exam is completed at official centers in Dubai, with applicants able to book their slot to complete the test online.

You will need to provide proof of identification when you arrive, this can be in the form of your passport or your Emirates ID.

Once the test begins, you will see a series of multiple-choice questions related to your field, which you must work through during the allocated time.

It is encouraged to do proper revision before the examination, as you are only able to attempt it three times.


How to get a DHA Eligibility letter

Once you have completed all of the steps and have successfully passed your DHA examination, you will be granted a DHA Eligibility letter.

A DHA Eligibility letter is usually valid for around one year and is used by healthcare workers to help them get a job.

The letter is proof to potential employers that if the individual was hired, they are credible and would be granted a license by the DHA.

The document is granted if a person passes their DHA licensing exam, meaning they can work in Dubai.

It’s important to remember that the DHA Eligibility letter is only valid if you are looking for a job as a nursing assistant in Dubai, not any of the other emirates.

After you take the DHA License exam, you will know a few days after on the Sheryan portal what your results are.

If you have passed, you can expect to have your eligibility letter around one to two weeks later. 


Procedure for DHA License Renewal

If you want to complete DHA License renewal, you will need to do this within three months of its expiry date.

You will need to again supply the necessary documents, such as your experience, your current license, and your good standing certificate. In addition, you will also need to ensure your passport and any other identification documents are still valid.

Again, you will use your Sheryan portal account to submit the relevant documents and apply for your renewal.


How to reactivate a cancelled DHA License

Similarly, to renewing your professional registration, this can also be done three months after the cancellation of the professional license.

You simply follow the same process as for a renewal, with the process expected to take around five days.


The next steps

By following the above instructions, you can become a DHA Licensed Nursing Assistant in Dubai in a period of just a few weeks.

After passing the DHA exam and receiving your eligibility letter, you will then be able to work for medical facilities, as well as healthcare recruitment agencies in the UAE.

If you are currently searching for a job in Dubai as a nursing assistant, nurse, or caregiver, you can apply now on the Acoup Recruitment Drive.



How to convert MOH License to DHA?

The DHA License is a permit that you are granted to work as a healthcare professional in the Emirate of Dubai only. An MOH license is granted by the Ministry of Health and allows you to work in the five other emirates, with a separate license, a HAAD, issued for Abu Dhabi.

To change your MOH to a DHA license, you need to sign up for a DHA account, and apply with your dataflow, submitting your MOH and then stating your exam exemption.

You will then be asked to submit your payment for your eligibility letter and will use this to apply for jobs where prospective employers would go on to apply for your license under them


Is the DHA Licensing exam easy?

If you have spent time revising for the DHA Licensing examination, then you should be able to pass the test.

However, those who have put in no preparation or time to revise may struggle during the test.


How do I check my DHA eligibility?

To check your DHA eligibility, you can complete a self-assessment on the Sheryan portal, which will clearly explain if you are eligible to work as your specified profession.


Does DHA license expire?

The DHA license must be renewed annually; however, this is a very simple process that can be completed online.


Is there an oral exam in the DHA?

There is an oral examination in the DHA, however it is not required for every profession. The DHA will alert you if this is the case

If required, you will need to schedule a date for the exam, and pay a fee of AED250, or if an urgent assessment, AED2,000.


Additional resources and contact information for the Dubai Health Authority.

If you need additional help or have further questions about getting your DHA License, you can find a live chat portal on their website.

They can also be reached at:

Phone (toll-free): +971 42 198 888