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29 August 2018

North-East Losing Out on Health Staff Due to Tory Visa Rules - Medic

A senior NHS consultant has warned that “racist” immigration policies out in place by the UK Tory Government are cutting off the supply of highly-trained doctors from North-east hospitals and harming patient care as a result.

NHS Nephrologist, Dr Izhar Khan said the flawed spousal visa system, designed by Prime Minister Theresa May when she was Home Secretary, is forcing non-EU nationals to leave the UK if their relationship ends.

This means that highly-trained health professionals are being forced to leave the UK and reapply for a visa while their jobs are re-advertised. If the post is not filled by a UK or EU national, the non-EU applicant will have to interview for their own job again.

Dr Khan warned the “triple whammy” of “Theresa May’s racist immigration policy” is as follows:

  1. forcing highly-qualified health service professionals out of the country,
  2. compelling the NHS to spend money on expensive locums, and
  3. harming patients who have operations cancelled or delayed as a result.

Commenting, Banffshire & Buchan Coast SNP MSP Stewart Stevenson said:

“It’s plain and simple – Theresa May’s ‘Britain first’ mantra is a danger to the North-east health service and its patients.

“The Tories’ hostile environment seriously risks harming patient care across Scotland by cutting off the supply of highly-skilled doctors, and in the worst cases, chucking them out of the country for no good reason at all.

“It is completely surreal that on the one hand the Tories bemoan staff shortages in the NHS, whilst on the other, they are actively deporting valuable NHS workers.

“The number of doctors and nurses in Scotland’s NHS has risen to an all-time high under the SNP, with more than 12,000 additional staff since 2007. But the Tories are jeopardising that success with their extreme Brexit plans and sheer intransigence over immigration.

“It’s time for the full devolution of immigration to Scotland – we cannot continue standing by while the UK Tory Government damages our public services.”

Stewart Stevenson
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