Why the NHS Needs International Doctors Now More Than Ever
International Doctors have always been a vital part of providing outstanding patient care for the NHS. However, with Covid 19 abating and trusts looking to resume ‘normal operations’, they’re going to be needed more than ever…
It is global knowledge that the NHS offers some of the highest-quality, most efficient and most accessible healthcare systems. The UK has a long history of medical innovation and it continues to make ground-breaking medical discoveries that changes the way we treat disease and care for patients.
The NHS has a lot to be proud of. Nevertheless, it is also known for being underfunded, understaffed and overstretched – now more than ever before. At this present moment in time, Covid 19 is at the forefront of everyone’s mind as the virus is sadly causing thousands of deaths across the world. That is why it is essential for us at ID Medical to use our network of international doctors to help strengthen the NHS’ workforce and beat Covid 19.
‘The NHS Needs You’ Campaign
Since the pandemic hit the UK, Health Secretary, Matt Hancock urged for tens of thousands of retired healthcare professionals to return to work to help maintain the NHS as a service and beat the virus with a nationwide effort. In positive news, within 48-hours of launching the campaign, there have been over 4,500 doctors and nurses who have re-registered with the GMC and NMC to return back to work.
The campaign has also seen final year medical and nursing students to temporarily register with their relevant governing body to strengthen the NHS’ workforce. We are pleased to see a strong community effort across the entire UK to aid the NHS during this difficult time. This includes MP’s returning to work in NHS hospitals in addition to members of society picking up shopping for NHS workers who are unable to access supermarkets.
The NHS and its approach to COVID-19
Every single NHS trust has a contingency plan for when Covid 19 hits them. NHS England Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response Framework sets out the expectations of how each part of the UK’s healthcare system should respond within a major incident. Covid 19, a pandemic is classified as Alert Level 4 – the most serious which calls for a serious response.
Covid 19 has not only increased the demand on the NHS to provide care for seriously ill people but it has seriously impacted the availability of staff; as many are unavailable for work resultant of being quarantined or as a result of the reduction in public transport and not being able to access their workplace with ease.
Top tip, if you are working in London, Uber is giving NHS staff free rides on its Jump electric bikes to help staff get to work during the pandemic.
Before the pandemic, the NHS had over 10,000 doctor vacancies and now the virus has exacerbated the pressure on the service more than ever. To aid the pressure we have so far seen the NHS cancel all elective surgeries, doctors are being moved to help high-pressure departments such as A&E and General Medicine.
If doctors have previous experience of the Intensive Care Unit and intubation, they will be redeployed back to ICU, where there is a larger call for patients needing ventilators. Constructively, we have recently seen that factories across the entire UK are tooling down to create more ventilators for the NHS. Nevertheless, once we do have more ventilators, we will need more trained doctors and nurses to help operate them and care for ventilated patients.
Historically, the NHS has proven its able to successfully respond within a crisis and we are confident that it will successfully fight against COVID-19 whilst continuing to provide the upmost quality-care to all patients. However, the understaffing will absolutely impact its performance to do so sooner rather than later. That is why, we are urging all international doctors who have received their GMC Registration to get in touch with us.
ID Medical can help international doctors and nurses secure the perfect NHS post and in turn we will be helping to relieve the pressure on the NHS as a free and accessible service to all who reside in the UK.
Join our Facebook Group – IMGS: The UK Doctors Network
We post daily blog posts, updates and insights for international doctors and nurses into how to successfully relocate to the UK and join the NHS! What’s more is you can ask us your relocation questions and get specialist advice and guidance on working in the UK as a GP! Just hit the ‘learn more’ button below!
Fast Tracked Visas and Immigration Surcharge Scrapped
At the beginning of March, we saw Governmental talks of a new ‘fast tracked visa’ to allow international doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals from overseas to start working within the NHS sooner. It came after the Government announced a new points-based immigration system with points awarded for specific skills, qualifications, salaries or professions. Confirmed by MP Helen Whately who claimed, “This Government will be introducing an NHS visa which will offer reduced fees and fast-tracked access for all overseas doctors to come and work in the UK”.
Although we have not seen a progression in this visa at this current date, we do suspect the change to be imminent to help more healthcare professionals reach the UK and aid the NHS’ service during the Covid 19 pandemic. Emphasising the need for more doctors to register with us, where qualifications and requirements are met.
However, since the outbreak of Covid 19, the Government has scrapped the immigration surcharge for all NHS workers – which you can read more about in our blog via this link.
Your safety and wellbeing
Preserving and protecting the health, safety and wellbeing of NHS staff is critical for the UK’s public healthcare system as they respond to the Covid 19 outbreak. Rest assured that when you arrive in the UK, each NHS Trust will make every effort to support your physical and mental wellbeing, enabling all staff to stay healthy, prevent stress and protect themselves from the virus.
Public Health England is continuously developing and reviewing plans to ensure that both emotional and physical support such as access to counselors and help with food shopping will be available to all. There is a nationwide effort from the public sector, businesses, charities and the general public to thank the NHS for its endless care and to help each and every NHS staff member in any way possible.
If you have received your GMC Registration or you are due to receive it and you are currently able to travel to the UK, please register with us here and we can help you secure that fantastic NHS post you have been working hard for.
We can support you in finding the perfect fixed-term or locum role with the NHS – Sign up with ID Medical today!
If you’re a medical professional, the NHS needs international doctors and nurses just like you! If you’re looking to work in healthcare here in the UK, or would like our support with securing a fixed-term or locum post within the NHS, we can support you with the below:
- Securing the perfect NHS post
- Tier 2 Visa Application
- Ongoing pastoral support
- Career advice and guidance
For help with your new NHS role, email your CV to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you can sign up with us online by hitting the link below!
The Nuffield Trust. 2020. Coronavirus: How Will The NHS Cope?. [online] Available at:
<https://www.nuffieldtrust.org.uk/news-item/coronavirus-how-will-the-nhs-cope> [Accessed 25 March 2020].
The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald. 2020. NHS: New Visa Unveiled For Overseas Doctors And Nurses To Work In UK. [online] Available at: <https://www.gazetteandherald.co.uk/news/18297159.nhs-new-visa-unveiled-overseas-doctors-nurses-work-uk/> [Accessed 25 March 2020].