British Medics trapped in New Zealand
...its goal is to stop British GPs leaving the NHS while the UK is in such a financial mess
IN what amounts to a punitive tax on GPs that have worked in NZ, the National Health Service is preventing British trained doctors from returning to the UK by "putting in place a pretty draconian policy".
Reported in Pulse, Nov 2011, The Committee of GP Education Deaneries (COGPED) - the organisation representing deaneries across the UK - issued new guidance in June to PCOs and assessors on ensuring GP returners prove their clinical competence before they can be re-admitted to performers' lists.
As a result, deaneries in England and Northern Ireland have toughened up returner scheme requirements, requiring GPs returning from abroad to resit a series of medical exams to prove their clinical competence when they return, even if they have been working in similar, English-speaking environments such as Australia, New Zealand or the USA.
The policy in England and Northern Ireland has angered some GPs, who claim it is preventing returners from going back to work for up to a year, even if they have been working in countries with similar environments to the UK.
A British GP working in Wellington who wishes to remain anonymous said, "That's our decision made for us. We've been struggling to decide when to head back to the UK, and now a return has been made impossible. How do we support children with a year of no pay?"
The GP in question remains a member of the GMC (General Medical Council) but is furious she was not informed of the new policy which appeared out of the blue.
"I even spoke to the GMC a year ago on rumours of such a policy, but was categorically informed no such plans existed."
"You can see this as a policy to prevent GPs returning to the UK, and I have absolutely no idea why they would do such a thing. People I have spoken to in the UK say they have trouble getting to see English speaking GPs, you would think they'd offer us a 'Golden Hello' not prevent us from returning. "