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GMC recruitment obstacles

I empathise with the plight of Dr Jane Crawford (News, September 8), a US-trained doctor who has faced difficulties in being able to work in the UK. When I arrived here two years ago, having completed my Australian fellowship in general practice some three years earlier, I found that although I was registered with the GMC, after completing the English language test (without the need for Professional and Linguistics Assessment Board) I was seen as not qualified to work in general practice, even though numerous surgeries were willing to employ me.

It took the joint committee approximately six months to come to its decision: I had to join a UK training programme and complete all tasks a GP registrar would, including a two-cycle audit, within six months. I did this while awaiting my appeal date, set for three months later, at which the appeal board overruled the original decision.

I was nearly ready to give up and go home long before this, so I can't imagine what it must be like for Dr Crawford if she hasn't even yet been able to register with the GMC. Once granted GMC registration she too may have to go through a similar course of events.

This is a time when the Government is trying to recruit GPs from within the UK and the EU. I hope that things improve.

My sympathy goes out to Dr Crawford.

Dr Jennifer Anderson, Basingstoke

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