Press Release 5/2020: Delayed registrations of nurses are resulting from late submissions of applications to the SANC

12 June 2020

TO:News Editor
FROM:Ms SA Mchunu
Registrar and CEO


Delayed registrations of nurses are resulting from late submissions of applications to the SANC

During a time when the world is facing one of its worst crisis, especially in the area of healthcare, the South African Nursing Council (SANC) has continued its commitment towards the nursing profession and the registration of nurses to enable them to practice.


The SANC recognises and understands the need for as many registered nurses as possible to assist with the Covid-19 pandemic and as a result has also offered free restoration into the Nursing Register to nurses who want to assist for the period of the COVID-19 National State of Disaster.


It is disheartening in the midst of a crisis of this magnitude to find that there is still misinformation causing misperceptions that ultimately result in damaging the SANC’s image and work.


In one such instance, the SANC was requested for more information regarding the registration of nurses, especially during the Covid period and during lock-down. The SANC responded in writing with full facts, background and relevant legislative provisions but the final article that was published and aired by ENCA did not reflect the facts provided. It is unfortunate that ENCA chose not to disclose full and accurate information and also provided some factually incorrect information in its report, which has unfortunately caused immense confusion and unjustly placed the SANC in a very bad light.


In the light of the information generated by ENCA, it is in the public interest for the SANC to provide the public with the correct facts:


Nursing Education Institutions legally have 30 days to submit applications for registration of Community Service Practitioners following completion of a nursing programme. The same applies to the Provincial Departments of Health in respect of registration of Professional Nurses following completion of Community Service. Legally, the SANC then has 60 days to process and issue certificates.


It is factually and grossly incorrect that “many graduate nurses who would like to help, can’t do so because of registration delays at the SA Nursing Council”. Applications received on time and even those received a month after deadline, were processed by the SANC and certificates were duly issued to all provinces during the lockdown. The 1000 outstanding applications referred to in the report are as a result of very late submissions to the SANC. 


One case in point is the “257 of those awaiting registration are in the Western Cape.” The applications were delayed by the Provincial Department of Health and unfortunately submitted only approximately two months after completion of Community Service which was in contravention of the prescribed period. It is regrettable that the correct information provided to ENCA was withheld, resulting in misinformation and confusion to the public. It is also unfortunate that graduates are being confused by this misinformation.


The public is further misled by the statement “Council’s offices were closed at the beginning of lockdown and only opened again this week”. In compliance with the regulations published under the Disaster Management Act, 57 of 2002 the Council was compelled to close its offices due to the pandemic but the SANC continued to render offsite critical services, hence registrations and certificates were issued to all provinces during lockdown. It is further factually incorrect that the SANC office opened this week only.


Says Ms Sizo Mchunu, SANC Registrar & CEO: “The SANC would like to reiterate its commitment to the nursing profession and the registration of nurses, thus enabling them to practice especially during a time like this. As regulator of the profession we support the need for as many nurses as possible to assist during the pandemic and thereafter, and we applaud nurses for the sacrifices they make during the pandemic, often at the cost of themselves and their families. Our hearts go out to the nurses who are inconvenienced by these unnecessary delays and are further misinformed regarding due processes”.




Issued by:
Mrs. Adri van Eeden
Senior Manager: Marketing and Communication
South African Nursing Council 
Tel: 012 426-9542



Official Spokesperson and person to be quoted:
Ms. S Mchunu
Registrar and CEO: SA Nursing Council


For more information or to arrange for an interview with the Spokesperson, please contact Mrs. Adri van Eeden on Tel. (012) 426-9542 or email: