Tuesday, 14 September 2010

British trainee doctors lose out to European applicants

Hundreds of junior doctors could be left without work following a surge in job applications from overseas.

The number of foreign medical graduates going for training posts has trebled in the past year following a series of NHS recruitment campaigns abroad.

As a result, what was set to be a shortage of job candidates is now expected to be an over-supply.

This year there have been more than 1,600 applications from foreigners for ‘foundation year 1’ posts, compared with 580 in 2009.

They will be in direct competition with the 7,300 graduates taking their final exams at British medical schools next summer.

With around 7,600 posts available on hospital wards, more than 1,000 medics applying to start work that August will miss out.

Candidates from British medical schools will be treated on equal terms with their foreign counterparts – many of whom are from Pakistan and Sudan.

The foundation work is an essential part of doctors’ training and allows them to be fully registered with the General Medical Council.

Richard Marks, of the pressure group Remedy, which campaigns to improve doctors’ training, said: ‘A small number may drop out altogether if they do not get a post.

‘Others will be left in a sort of limbo as they will have finished medical school but won’t be properly registered.’

Footnote: Since when has Pakistan and Sudan been 'European'?

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