Disbelief as GPs are threatened with deportation

The Doctors’ Association UK is utterly appalled that up to 1000 newly qualified GPs face deportation despite having completed their GP training in the UK. See our press release

Home Office rules state that foreign doctors must work under the skilled worker visa scheme for at least five years before they can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) and this timeframe covers most specialist medical training. But GPs usually gain their certificate of completion of training (CCT) after three years, leaving a two-year gap during which they must secure sponsorship if they want to stay in the country when their visas run out. This gap leaves several GPs in limbo with the threat of deportation hanging over them. The Sunday Mirror has now reported on this, quoting DAUK’s IMG Lead Dr Pushpo Hossain and co-Chair Ellen Welch, that up to 1000 newly qualified GPs face deportation despite having completed their GP training in the UK. 

“This simply defies belief and demonstrates the siloed thinking that is present in government when it comes to NHS staffing. These doctors, who worked during the pandemic, are ideally placed to help address the problems faced by a dramatically understaffed GP service currently."

The Royal College of General Practitioners said that overseas GPs in the UK are being threatened with deportation. Our co-chair Dr Ellen Welch appears on BBC Radio 5 live to talk about how DAUK is working to match GP practices who can sponsor visas with GPs who need it, which was mentioned in Pulse. Dr Ellen Welch, a GP and co-chair of DAUK, says that the GP workload is immense, but there aren’t enough doctors to deal with it. To threaten deportation to fully trained GPs is clearly unwise. The government’s narrative is false, the sensible step is to approve indefinite leave to remain for trained doctors in the UK so that the pressure on the workforce is removed. 

“We are short of thousands of GPs in the U.K. and desperately need these doctors to stay and work in the NHS. If the government is serious about bolstering the workforce then they need to take immediate action to ensure these doctors are not deported and are granted indefinite leave to remain to use their skills within our crumbling health service.”

Tune into Dr Ellen Welch speaking to BBC Five Live here.