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Independents' Day

'Universal patient support' for 10 European GP imports in under-doctored region

The first of 500 European GPs have received 'universal support' from patients, after being brought in to help alleviate the workforce crises in some of the country’s most hard hit regions, GP leaders report.

Ten GPs have already taken up training positions in Lincolnshire following a pioneering scheme by the LMC, which prepares GPs from across Europe for life in the NHS at a boot camp in Poland.

Lincolnshire LMC chair Dr Kieran Sharrock told Pulse that patients were ‘delighted’ at the influx of doctors to surgeries in the region - one of the UK’s most staunchly anti-EU in last year’s referendum.

There are 17 more NHS GPs-to-be currently going through language and induction training in Poland, who are due to arrive in August. The recruitment drive has not been slowed by uncertainty caused by the referendum.

Dr Sharrock told Pulse that the new GPs recognise that the UK ‘provides 'gold standard general practice' and they want to 'develop their careers by coming here'.

Lincolnshire LMC pioneered the workforce scheme, which also provides GPs support with relocation expenses, their language and pastoral needs, and finding a house.

And NHS England committed £20m to rolling out the scheme across England, aiming to bring in 500 GPs to struggling regions in a bid to deliver Jeremy Hunt’s 5,000 GP pledge.

Dr Sharrock said: ‘We have ten in the UK already, seeing patients and having ongoing training and support from practices and the LMC. They are settling in well and are very enthusiastic, and the patients from the practices have been universally supportive, and are delighted to have the GPs in practice.

‘They have all expressed the desire to work in the UK as we provide “gold standard general practice” and they want to develop their careers by coming here.’

Readers' comments (8)

  • National Hopeless Service

    All I have heard from patients today is constant moaning about cancelled hospital appointments, long waiting lists etc etc.
    I bet their contracts have nailed their feet to the floor otherwise I doubt they will last long.

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  • Vinci Ho

    ABC of politics
    Either a bigger government, but smaller market OR
    a smaller government, but bigger market .
    Never get the balance right
    Choice is yours when you vote........

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  • Vinci the choice is big lefty government or big righty government. No small gov choices in the uk.

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  • AlanAlmond

    I welcome these folk and hope they settle in and are happy here. Thank you, I hope you do well, and good have luck.

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  • Patients will welcome anyone able to provide care from an otherwise empty consulting chair - Overseas doctors , Physician associates, Paramedics, Pharmacists etc. I think that they all have a place in primary care but am worried that they are seen as a replacement for the experienced GPs that we are losing at an early age, and should be doing more to encourage them to continue working.

    We are revisiting the situation just over a decade ago when we recruited doctors from the EU. Good doctors, but they still needed a lengthy induction period in the ways of the NHS as was so different from GP work at home. A good proportion went home after they had their years induction and started real life in general practice. Some were homesick, some only intended to stay a year or two, some found the workload pressure not much different from home. some doctors did stay and remain valued colleagues. Hope we support these doctors so that those with an intention to remain can do so.

    " Boot camp" sounds a bit worrying. Sounds like they are getting these doctors out of bed at 5am to do an assault course. Perhaps this is the best way to prepare for British General Practice!

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  • So UK trained doctors who have not passed MRCGP are unable to work as GPs, but Doctors trained abroad and without MRCGP will be able to work as GPs? How does that work? Are we being stabbed in the back by the RCGP, again?

    Meanwhile, life as an NHS GP will continue to be unreformed drudgery as the need to reform can be ignored as long as long as posts can be filled with imported labour.

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  • Amazing efficiency. £20 m spending on recruitment in EU and how many did they get? Is it £1 m or £2 m per head?

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  • Stelvio at 953
    You make a valid point.
    We need slaves to do the shit.don't we?And where do we get them easily from?
    No need for MRCGP as far as you can ...

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