Working on the BES islands

Do you want to work as a doctor, dentist, pharmacist or midwife on Bonaire, Sint Eustatius or Saba (BES islands)? Then you need a BES exemption. You also need a BES exemption if you are going to work temporarily or occasionally on the BES islands. A BES exemption is issued for a maximum of 4 years. There are different types of requests. Which application you have to submit depends on your situation. View the step-by-step plan on this page for more information.

On the BES islands, the professions of dentist and doctor are called ‘geneeskundige’ and ‘tandheelkundige’.

How do you apply for a BES exemption?

Costs and time

Applying for a BES exemption is free.

If you apply for exemption with a (former) BIG registration or with a designated diploma, the application procedure will take a maximum of 8 weeks. If you apply with a diploma obtained outside the EU member state or Switzerland, the total process (declaration of professional competence + BES exemption) usually takes longer. The duration varies per application and person.

Overview of active BES exemptions

Care providers with a BES exemption can be found on the list of BES exemptions [in Dutch] published by the Rijksdienst Caribisch Nederland. This list is regularly updated.