Yes. The Specified Skills Evaluation Test consists of three tests: the Nursing Care Skills Evaluation Test, the Nursing Care Japanese Language Evaluation Test, and a test to measure the Japanese language proficiency level.
The Nursing Care Skills Evaluation Test and the Nursing Care Japanese Language Evaluation Test measure specialized skills and Japanese language skills that are used in the field of nursing care, with the standard being the level that someone is work ready. The Japanese language proficiency level is measured by the Japan Foundation’s Test for Basic Japanese or the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (N4 or better is required).
The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare homepage introduces the Specified Skilled Worker system and shares information on the application process for the tests (external link to the website for Prometric Japan Co., Ltd., who conducts the tests).
Prometric Japan Co., Ltd. accepts inquiries by email and phone. There is an external link on the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare website.
Foreign nationals who came to Japan as an EPA Candidate for “Kaigofukushishi” (certified care worker) and who have been appropriately engaged in work/training at a nursing care facility for four years or who have completed “Technical Intern Training (ii)” in nursing care are determined to satisfy the necessary skill level and Japanese proficiency level to be exempt from the previously mentioned skills test and Japanese language tests and can move on to “Specified Skilled Worker (i)”. Foreigners who have completed “Technical Intern Training (ii)” in a field other than nursing care are exempt from a portion of the test to measure their Japanese proficiency level. (The Nursing Care Skills Evaluation Test and the Nursing Care Japanese Language Evaluation Test are still required.)
It varies depending on the rules for each country.
It is possible to change jobs as long as you are working within the same industry or between companies when the commonality of the skill level has been evaluated through testing. In the case of nursing care, it is possible to move to another facility that accepts nursing care workers.
There are registered support organizations. Individuals or organizations are commissioned by host institutions to support foreign nationals who are Specified Skilled Workers with tasks like securing residency and assisting with contracts that are necessary for everyday life. There is a registration system for registered support organizations with the local Immigration Services Agency.
Specified Skilled Workers (i) are not able to bring families. However, those certified care workers who have acquired “national certification” can work and live permanently, and are able to bring their families.
Level N4 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (understanding of basic Japanese) is required.
Even those who have never resided in Japan before can enter the country to take the tests under the residence status of “Temporary Visitor”. It is also possible to take the tests outside of Japan. As of October 2020, tests are being held in Cambodia, Indonesia, Mongolia, Nepal and the Philippines.
In addition to nursing care for physical needs (such as assistance related to bathing, mealtimes, toilet needs, etc. depending on the physical and mental condition of users), the work also entails other support services (such as implementation of recreational activities and assistance with functional training).
*Home visitation services are not included here.
Please check the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare website, which has information available in multiple languages. Information on the new coronavirus infectious disease can be found on the homepage that supports foreign languages.
Please contact the “Free consultation services for foreign care workers” provided by JICWELS.
They also hold events such as exchange parties for foreigners working in the same nursing care field.