Tag Archives: foreign doctors

Disgrace of Indian doctors in the NHS

Jeremy Hunt, who has conspicuously failed to deliver any of his albeit unsustainable promises during his tenure as Health Minister, has presided over a continuing disgrace perpetrated by governments of both parties over several years.

Linked to the wider assertions from both  left wingers and commercial organisations (who wish to exploit cheaper overseas labour) that the UK will come to a  halt unless the borders are flung open, the NHS continues to be reliant on foreign doctors to function, with Indian doctors making  up by far the largest percentage.

This approach (driven – oddly – by MP’s seeking ‘multicultural’ credibility on the one hand and by companies  seeking a profit on the other) is excused on the basis that there is a shortfall of  home grown medics; this is indeed true, but this is entirely by governmental design.  Governments have for years restricted and then capped the places available in English medical schools (only raising that cap by 1,500 in the last 3 years) to save money, in spite of  having a surfeit of  qualified applicants for domestic training places.

The simple explanation is that it  is cheaper to spend a reported (August 2017) £100m to recruit doctors from Poland, Lithuania, Greece and above all India, rather than expand medical training in the UK.

This is hypocritical, appalling illogical, but above all disgracefully and unconscionably immoral. Does India have an excess of doctors?  No, absolutely the reverse, India has one of the highest rates of infant mortality of any developed  country and  one of the lowest ratios of doctors to population. The fact is that the UK’s failure to address medical training here has directly resulted in loss of life in in a country where 600m people have no direct access to structured healthcare.

Labour MP Tulip Siddiq (a typical, privately educated, privileged champagne socialist if ever there was one) even said it was ‘disgraceful’ that the UK should try and increase the domestic supply at the expense of immigrant doctors, as proposed by Theresa May. No, Tulip (really ?), the disgrace is the government denying willing and qualified UK citizens the opportunity of become doctors whilst simultaneously poaching them from a country with a chronic shortage of same. It’s not moral.

British politicians of both major parties should hang their heads in shame that their collective unwillingness to address the fundamental funding issues of the NHS results in effectively exporting ill-health to India by raiding their vital scarce indigenous medical  skills.