The International Mobility Cell for Heath Professions is primarily responsible for the professional recognition of foreign diplomas. First, we must make a clear distinction between the various foreign diplomas:
- Diplomas obtained within the European Economic Area (EEA = European Union + Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) and in Switzerland. Application of EU Directive 2005/36/EC concerning the recognition of professional qualifications. This Directive is only applicable to the citizens of the Member States of the European Economic Area, Switzerland or equivalent countries.
- All other foreign diplomas
- Special case: Article 49 bis §1 and §2 of Royal Decree No. 78 (Non-EEA citizens with a diploma which is academically equivalent to a Belgian diploma)
- Performance of services
Subsequently, we must also make a distinction between recognition with a view to practicing a certain profession (professional recognition), and purely academic recognition (equivalence). Within the present legal structures, professional recognition is only possible within the framework of the European Legal Order. Besides allowing one to practice a profession, the purely academic recognition can also provide: access to other trainings, a teaching position…
In general, we can say that professional recognitions fall under the competence of the Federal Government (our department for health professions) and equivalence falls under the competence of the Communities.
Applications for recognition of the diploma of general practitioner are handled directly by the International Mobility Cell of Health Professions.
EC/EU/EEA recognition [NL] [FR] and EC/EU/EER recognition as doctor HCE application form [NL].
Here, our role is usually limited to providing information and references. It is the Communities (http://www.ond.vlaanderen.be/naric/ and http://www.enseignement.be/index.php?page=24833&navi=2088) which are competent for most of these diplomas.
Article 49 of Royal Decree No. 78
Foreigners who are normally entitled to practice their profession in Belgium may, under certain conditions, be permitted to practice certain activities within the framework of specialised training.
For more information on the procedure to be followed in order to get this permission: Pharmacist Form Art. 49 ter [NL] [FR]
Article 49 bis §1 and §2 of Royal Decree No. 78
This Article concerns health professionals who do not have the nationality of a Member State of the European Economic Area or of Switzerland, whose foreign diploma has been declared academically equivalent by either the French or the Flemish Community, and who want to practice their profession in Belgium.
For more information about the procedure to be followed, please refer to: Circular to candidates 49 bis § 1 and 2 [NL] [FR].
Article 49 bis §3 of Royal Decree No. 78
Non-European citizens who have a diploma issued by a Member State of the EU which is accordance with Directive 2005/36/EC, are declared equivalent to European citizens with respect to the handling of their application for professional recognition.
This procedure concerns European health professionals who are authorised to practice their profession in a Member State of the EEA and who want to practice their profession in Belgium during a very short period (for example, five days or one month).
Please contact the Cell directly.
Federal Public Service (FPS) Health, Food Chain Safety and Environment
Place Victor Horta, 40 box 10
Contact Center: +32 (0)2 524.97.97 (on working days between 8-12 a.m. | 1-4 p.m.)
Published on 20/01/2016 – Page last updated on 20/01/2016