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to think the nhs being reliant on immigrants is nothing to be proud of

(68 Posts)
traciebanbanjo Sat 26-May-18 08:07:11

It's pretty selfish draining so many medical professionals from poor countries like the Philippines and Nigeria. So why is it almost always presented as a good thing?

The solution would be to fund places correctly over here but nobody in power ever looks towards the long term.

KoshaMangsho Sat 26-May-18 08:12:27

There is a serious shortage of staff and has been for some time. Right from the 1950s when the first lot of immigrants were encouraged to come and work in the NHS. Britain simply doesn’t have enough doctors and nurses to staff the NHS and hasn’t for decades. We can spend more on education but I doubt it’s going to make an impact.
PS My sister and her husband came to the UK as doctors in the 1990s and at that time doctors came on special visa free permits so they could start work immediately. They are both consultants today in very demanding specialities.

traciebanbanjo Sat 26-May-18 08:17:38

Spending more on education would make a hforweveforever imo. They've cut things like nurses bursary's. It would be a long term investment. As countries get richer and the UK gets poorer this short term fix can't continue forever.

GrannyGrissle Sat 26-May-18 08:19:27

I was going to train to be a nurse until the fees introduction. I imagine the situation is only going to get worse as many will no longer be able to afford to train to be/work as a nurse.

FatherMacKenzie Sat 26-May-18 08:21:03

A relative of mine is quite senior in a big NHS trust and he is seriously concerned about staffing. Especially nurse shortages. For the first time ever, he actually encouraged me to get private health care. I never thought he’d say that in my life sad.

purits Sat 26-May-18 08:27:18

I totally agree OP. We should be training our own staff. It is dangerous and naive to rely on foreign staff and not very fair on the countries they come from.

The right-on folk get very upset about the past and Empire and how we exploited the natural resources of other countries but seem oblivious to the present day exploitation of their workforces.

Pengggwn Sat 26-May-18 08:31:22

I don't think it is presented as a point of pride. It's presented as a prime example of why, at the moment, we can't be too draconian about immigration.

Ylvamoon Sat 26-May-18 08:31:26

I guess it's about funding, working hours and the pressure of working for the NHS as portrait in the media= very attractive carer choice!

IheartNiles Sat 26-May-18 08:38:42

It’s ultimately cheaper to import staff from elsewhere as you don’t have the costs of training them and they’ll work for a lower wage. This supply of staff from poorer countries enables the government to hold down pay for all staff. The pay and working conditions are not good enough to attract sufficient numbers of British young people to train. Plus the numbers of training places in the U.K. are insufficient as the government doesn’t want to fund them. Then they took the step of cutting training bursaries. It’s unfair to ask HCPs to fund their training as the hours required to do the course are far higher than normal degrees, meaning there is limited opportunity to work and fund cost of living.

cloudtree Sat 26-May-18 08:40:59

I think we should be dropping fees for nursing as long as there is then a commitment to a long period of time working for the NHS.

NoSuchThingAsAlpha Sat 26-May-18 08:43:45

But should individuals be forced to live in a country with low wages for their field just because they happened to be born there?

FriendlyOcelot Sat 26-May-18 08:45:50

Unfortunately, we live in a country whose priorities are fucked up. We can thank the Tory government for that.

drearydeardre Sat 26-May-18 08:49:10

researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/CBP-7783
the majority of NHS staff are still British especially outside London.

Glumglowworm Sat 26-May-18 08:52:47

I don’t think it’s presented as proud or not proud. Just a fact and a reason why we can’t ban all immigration and “send em back where they came from”.

NoSuchThingAsAlpha Sat 26-May-18 08:52:47

And would it not be hypocritical for UK citizens to be allowed to go to, say, the US to earn loads in finance but prevent, say, Indian citizens from coming here and earning loads as specialist health care professionals?

traciebanbanjo Sat 26-May-18 09:12:01

The right-on folk get very upset about the past and Empire and how we exploited the natural resources of other countries but seem oblivious to the present day exploitation of their workforces.

Yes this exactly! It's not really helping the people of either country, just those at the top.

Four5six Sat 26-May-18 09:21:35

And why is the onus on people who have moved to work in more privileged countries with more opportunities to eventually move back to where they were born?

If I came from a very poor background in the UK (which I do), worked my arse off, qualified as a health professional, would you tell me to go and work where I grew up or would it be ok for me to choose to move?

sothisisspring Sat 26-May-18 09:21:42

My local hospital actively recruits nurses from Portugal, trains them when they get here to test their skills and improve their English and then uses them on certain wards. (Apparently. Spent a lot of time visiting there last year.)

A lot of staff there are European, Dr who delivered my second son was Irish but many nurses and midwives are Eastern European, the less qualified staff often from outside the EU. We aren't in London.

I think we need to reinstate the nurses funding bursary and look at recruitment of nurses and teachers. I think a small bursary should be given to all and then when you work in state sector for 5 years all loans are repaid.

Elliss2018 Sat 26-May-18 09:28:13

I've got 8 weeks until I become a qualified nurse; I've been lucky that I've trained with the bursary. However, I've worked 2300 hours unpaid. The bursary is not a lot to live off when you have a family and a mortgage to consider. If I worked alongside my degree I just wouldn't have ever seen my dc. I have secured a job with the NHS as I do feel we should give something back for funding our degrees. Some of my cohort have got jobs in private nursing homes though as the pay is so much better.

SergeantPfeffer Sat 26-May-18 09:30:32

How do you know it’s not helping other countries? Many doctors and nurses come to the uk for a number of years to train or exchange knowledge and then take their training and acquired knowledge back to their home countries. This is how modern medicine works and plenty of uk doctors and nurses do the same. Should they all not be allowed to travel? How would medicine advance in that case?

seafoodeatit Sat 26-May-18 09:30:39

Lots of British doctors and nurses are working in Australia, it's what a lot of medical staff do they move to where the salary is best. Our system being a not for profit (for now) cannot pay those salaries and at the other end people working in countries with poorly funded healthcare received peanuts in their own countries. It's been the case for a long time, lots of people abroad train with the though of working abroad as it's what's best for their families. We need the staff, we can't afford to train and retain the volume needed either.

Lifeisabeach09 Sat 26-May-18 09:41:02

I agree with most of what's being said but, also, have to add that the foreign nurses I have worked with (I'm a former NHS nurse) have been an absolutely asset: Phillippino, Portuguese and Spanish. Especially the Phillippino nurses-most experienced and knowledgeable nurses. Would definitely trust my care to them.
Yes, we need more British nurses. The bursary should be re-instated and the degree programme needs to change. I came out of university being able to write a decent essay on nursing history (woo hoo!) but completely unable to take bloods, cannulate, or catheterise a patient as we are not trained in these.
Whereas the above mentioned foreign nurses are trained in these clinical activities as part of their degree programmes.
The pay is ok for nurses but it's the working conditions that are the problem: understaffing (nurses and carers) means one nurse may be doing the job of two-three persons. I left because of this burden.

ErrolTheDragon Sat 26-May-18 09:44:14

Is there any reason why there don't seem to be apprenticeship schemes for healthcare training?

traciebanbanjo Sat 26-May-18 09:47:34

People that trained in the UK going off to Australia and US isn't helpful either, people should have funding and some commitments to the place that funded them. That's not to say people shouldn't ever move, but the current system is reliant on it to force down wages and cost cut from what I hear.

sashh Sat 26-May-18 09:51:14

Can I just make everyone aware of 'honorary' positions

If you are ever treated by a Dr who's name badge is 'honorary registrar' or similar they are actually being paid by there home government and the home government are also paying the NHS.

Places like Sri Lanka fund the NHS to 'train' their Drs who work for free in the NHS.

The bursary should be re-instated and the degree programme needs to change. I came out of university being able to write a decent essay on nursing history (woo hoo!) but completely unable to take bloods, cannulate, or catheterise a patient as we are not trained in these.

Or go back to a system where you spend 3 years working and studying in a hospital and being paid a 'student nurse' salary.

I'm old enough to have worked in the NHS alongside students undergoing the old SRN/RGN routes. I do believe you need degree level education but you also need the practical skills too.

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