THE Times reports that medical schools have been told by the government to limit the number of medical students they accept, facing fines of £100,000 per student they recruit over the target number.
It says: ‘Ministers have been criticised for holding firm to a 7,500 cap on new medical students in England while also acknowledging that a chronic shortage of doctors and nurses is contributing to long delays for NHS treatment.’
This shortage is said to be the reason for recruiting doctors trained overseas, often from developing countries which face much worse staff shortages than the UK. This recruitment method, the government claims, saves the taxpayer the approximate £160,000 cost of training a doctor here.
How about putting an obligation on new doctors trained here to work for the NHS for a minimum of ten years, in return for the investment in their training? (At the moment there no obligation on the newly trained doctor to remain in the NHS). And put a stop to the three-day working week norm until after at least five years of full-time working. Take all that saving into account and the claimed £160,000 overseas recruitment ‘saving’ starts to look a bit different.
Feel free to discuss this or anything else on your mind.