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Austrians lured to help GP jobs crisis

GPs are being recruited from Austria in a bid to address the workforce shortage in south Yorkshire.

Doncaster West, Doncaster Central and Barnsley primary care trusts recently made contact with 60 doctors interested in coming to England after

attending a careers fair at a medical school in Vienna.

Doncaster West currently has 11 out of 52 posts vacant and has stopped advertising in the British medical press for GPs after it failed to receive a single applicant over a six-month period.

Dr Lis Rodgers, professional executive committee chair of the trust and a singlehanded GP in Barnburgh, Doncaster, said that first impressions of the Austrian doctors had been encouraging.

'They were really nice, bright young people. Their English was generally very good and I could see them fitting in here,' she said.

'Even if we only get two or three out of this batch it will be worth it.'

Ian Carpenter, head of communications at Doncaster West PCT, said the trust had heard that many qualified doctors in Austria were driving taxis because they could not get medical jobs.

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