Government ministers will introduce legislation to make it easier for overseas dentists and nurses to work in the UK.
It is hoped the move will help thousands of health professionals work in the UK. The changes will make it easier for medical regulators to register those who qualified abroad.
If it’s put in place, it would provide pathways for dentists and nurses from countries such as Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Kenya and the Philippines.
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The British Dental Association (BDA) said it welcomed the move – but that the new drive would not end the shortage of NHS dentists.
Eddie Crouch, BDA chair said action his ‘long overdue’, adding: ‘Ministers need to do more than try to fill a leaky bucket. They need to actually fix it.’
Patricia Marquis, director for England of the Royal College of Nursing, last month expressed concern over reliance on international staff.
Speaking to The Nursing Times, she said that overseas recruitment ‘isn’t the only solution’
She said: ‘Our health system is already over-reliant on international nursing staff and we must ensure recruitment is ethical and not being done in countries that are facing workforce shortages more severe than our own.’
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