The Department of Health wants GPs to be listed as a shortage occupation to make it easier to recruit GPs from abroad, a report released today has revealed.
The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) decided in February not to add GPs to the list of occupations which lowers the bar for immigration to the UK from overseas, and its annual report makes clear that it took this decision despite the DH having asked for the profession to be added.
The report says: ’The evidence on behalf of the Department of Health asked that GPs be added to the shortage list but the MAC did not see any evidence suggesting that there is a shortage of medical students who could continue into general practice.’
The MAC has said it wants to await the outcome of the Government’s plans for boosting GP recruitment before potentially adding GPs to the list.
The BMA told MPs last month that recruiting overseas GPs is ‘essential’.
It comes as the Home Office has temporarily added nurses to the list while asking the MAC to review whether they should be added long term.