Help refugee doctors work in the NHS

During the current pandemic, the NHS has been doing an amazing job treating victims of Covid-19 despite being overstretched and understaffed.

One of the ways in which that burden can be eased is to allow refugee doctors who qualified in their country of origin to be allowed to practise as doctors in the UK.

We are therefore calling on the government and the medical authorities to speed up their registration procedures, so that refugee doctors who are keen to play their part can do so as soon as possible.

Please help us by signing the letter below.


Open letter to Matt Hancock - Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

Dear Mr Hancock,

As members of the Jewish community, we are extremely concerned about the unnecessary delays in registering hundreds of overseas-qualified doctors, including refugee doctors, to enable them to join the NHS to help tackle COVID-19.

Many are keen to join the frontline response across the UK but are prevented by the General Medical Council's lengthy registration process. Some of those waiting for it to be completed are working as mini-cab or delivery drivers. Yet, despite the emergency, the next round of assessments for registration is not scheduled till July.

We are not suggesting lowering the standards for registration, but finding ways to speed up the process.The extra support could make a significant difference to the NHS and help save lives.

The experience of refugee doctors resonates especially strongly with our community. Many of the Jewish doctors who fled Hitler in the 1930s had a difficult time requalifying here.

We missed out then on what they had to offer; we cannot afford to do that now.

Today's overseas-qualified doctors simply want to play their part in strengthening the NHS's capacity. Many of them have experience in working in war zones where procedures like intubation are frequently required; they are used to performing under tremendous pressure and with few resources so would be a valuable asset to the NHS at this critical time.

Can you assure you us that they will be registered and working as soon as possible?

Yours sincerely,

Please click here to sign this letter