NHS needs thousands of foreign medics to overcome GP shortage [MANY WHO HARDLY SPEAK ENGLISH & IGNORE NATIVES]
Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) is in urgent need of thousands of foreign doctors to fill its vacant positions for general practitioners, the leader of Britain’s family doctors has warned.
Chairman of the Royal College of General Practitioners, Helen Stokes-Lampard, said Thursday that foreign medics had to be fast-tracked to plug GP shortages in the NHS, an organization she said was suffering from a “hemorrhaging” of existing staff.
Stokes-Lampard made the comments in an article for The Daily Telegraph. She said the NHS was already struggling with “an all-time high” record in waiting times for GP appointments.
“Unfortunately, while workload in general practice is soaring, both in terms of volume and complexity, we are hemorrhaging family doctors from the NHS,” she said, adding that the NHS should ease restrictions on the employment of foreign doctors as many GPs from abroad wanted to work in Britain but were struggling to obtain licenses.
The professor said patients had to wait up to a month for a GP appointment, a delay she said caused many to suffer or see their condition deteriorate.
According to official data, the number of GPs in the NHS has decreased by 1,000 since an announcement two years ago by the organization, which said it was going to train some 5,000 new doctors by 2020.
Officials only managed to recruit 100 GPs from abroad from a target of around 600 they had been expected to meet in April last year.
Stokes-Lampard, herself a GP in Staffordshire, said training homegrown doctors would need at least 10 years.
She urged the NHS to ensure that the process for recruiting qualified GPs would be accelerated so that more staff could be added to the organization in the near future.