Frequently asked questions from foreign dentists

We receive a lot of questions from abroad. Do you have a question? Please check the FAQ below first.

1. What is a BIG registration?

You may only work as a dentist in the Netherlands if you are listed in the Dutch Healthcare Professionals (BIG) register. BIG administers the registration of healthcare professionals in the BIG Register, on behalf of the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. They also issue a Certificate of Professional Competence to care providers wishing to practise in the Netherlands on the basis of a degree awarded in another country. Registration in the BIG-register is temporary. After 5 years you will be asked to re-register. For more information, please contact BIG.

2. Why do I have to register with the Dutch Healthcare Professionals (BIG) Register?

Being listed in the Dutch Healthcare Professionals (BIG) register means that:

  • You may use the legally protected title(s) belonging to your profession.

  • You may practise your profession independently.

  • You may carry out certain reserved procedures independently.

  • You are subject to the disciplinary rules of the relevant profession.

  • You can begin specialist training in your professional field.

3. I am studying in the European Union and would like to work in the Netherlands. What should I do?

4. I am studying outside the European Union and would like to work in the Netherlands. What should I do?

5. I am studying in the European Union and would like to continue studying dentistry in the Netherlands. What should I do?

We advise you to contact one of the following three Dutch institutions:

6. What are the requirements for working as a dentist in the Netherlands (from inside and outside the European Economic Area (EEA)?

If you wish to work as a dentist in the Netherlands, you have to fulfil certain conditions. These range from a command of the Dutch language to legal permits and regulations. Please check this page on our KNMT website for more information about the requirements. If you are BIG registered, you can look for a job opportunity anywhere in the Netherlands. And you can you join the KNMT. The KNMT has a lot to offer, for example an online tool to find dentistry jobs.

7. What should I arrange before starting work as a foreign dentist in the Netherlands?

In recent years, it has become easier to work in another country. Especially if you want to move within Europe. Nevertheless, it takes a lot of effort to gather all the information you need and actually start as a dentist in the Netherlands. As the largest association in the Netherlands of oral care professionals, the KNMT would like to offer you a helping hand. Here are some tips if you come from within the European Union.

8. The KNMT also provides information to patients about oral hygiene, dental treatments, oral surgeons and orthodontists?

On the KNMT provides detailed information about oral care, dental treatments, orthodontists, oral surgeons and dental practice. Dentists can refer their patients to this website for more information.

The Dental Information Point answers patients’ telephone enquiries about such matters as treatments, care, compensation and rates. Patients who are not satisfied with their dentist can use the KNMT Complaints Service. (in Dutch)

Dental Information Point: patients helpdesk (by telephone only; in Dutch)

Complaints Service for patients (in Dutch)

9. I would like to become a member of the KNMT. How do I register?

The KNMT (Royal Dutch Dental Organisation) is the largest association in the Netherlands for oral care professionals. We represent the interests of dentists and promote quality in dental care in the Netherlands. As an association with over 8000 members, the KNMT has a tremendous pool of knowledge, quality, experience and ambition. As a KNMT member, you can avail yourself of our collective benefits scheme at any stage of your career, beginning as a student. We will help you, as a beginning dentist, to give your career a flying start. And we we are also there to support you during your career as a self-employed professional (ZZP'er), or as a practice owner or member of a partnership.  Read more about the benefits. Are you BIG registered? And would you like to join us too?

Apply here for your KNMT membership

Other questions? Get in touch

If you are considering working as a dentist in the Netherlands and you have any further questions, you can always contact the KNMT Members Service, available from 8:30 AM to 5 PM  (T: +31 (0) 30 607 6380). You can also submit your questions by email.