Britain forced to fly in foreign doctors to fill in physician gaps

Rick Moran
What happens to doctors under nationalized health insurance?

They become like any union and negotiate for more money while working less. Doctors in Great Britain recently signed a contract that gives them evening and weekends off while paying them more. Of course, that leaves patients high and dry if they happen to need a doctor after hours.

The situation has gotten so bad that they are flying in doctors from all over the world to take up the slack left by reluctant British physicians.

Rebecca Camber writing in the Daily Mail:

The NHS is having to rely on doctors from overseas because a lucrative new contract for British GPs has resulted in more than 90 per cent opting out of responsibility for their patients in the evenings and at weekends.

Despite doing less, their pay has soared by 50 per cent to an average of almost £108,000.

Responsibility for out-of-hours cover has now passed to primary care trusts.

The rules state that foreign doctors need to have basic GP training, but recent experience is not always necessary.

Their qualifications are checked by the General Medical Council and the local PCT, but no checks are in place to ensure that they are not exhausted after working long hours in their home country.

Our investigation revealed that more than a third of the 152 primary care trusts (PCTs) in England have flown in foreign GPs in the last year. Of the 146 trusts who responded, 51 have used overseas GPs in the last 12 months.

The figure has trebled since 2008 when just one in ten primary care trusts were flying in GPs from abroad. However, it is impossible to know the exact number of GPs travelling to the UK as many primary care trusts do not keep a record of their nationality.

Since there is no incentive for the doctors to put themselves out - they get the same amount of money whether they work 9-5 and are off weekends or whether they bust their hump treating patients - why should the Brits be shocked that no one wants to extend themselves and they become forced to rely on foreigners to take up the slack?

The story also highlights the questionable qualifications of many of the foreign doctors with one Nigerian doctor injecting a patient with 10 times the recommended dose of morphine. The same physician also refused to send a woman heart attack patient to the hospital.

Both patients died which is how this investigation got started.

I would think something like this is inevitable if we start dictating to doctors what they can charge their patients. It's one reason doctors here refuse Medicare patients. Of course, if everyone is on government insurance, the doctor has little choice and will take what the government offers him as far as fees are concerned and like it.

By the way, I don't mean to trash the British health care system. They seem very touchy about how badly it has failed and the last thing I want to do is piss off our cousins across the Atlantic. I'm sure everyone over there is wildly enthusiastic about their government run health care program.

I just wish Obama and the Democrats preferred importing something else from England.












What happens to doctors under nationalized health insurance?

They become like any union and negotiate for more money while working less. Doctors in Great Britain recently signed a contract that gives them evening and weekends off while paying them more. Of course, that leaves patients high and dry if they happen to need a doctor after hours.

The situation has gotten so bad that they are flying in doctors from all over the world to take up the slack left by reluctant British physicians.

Rebecca Camber writing in the Daily Mail:

The NHS is having to rely on doctors from overseas because a lucrative new contract for British GPs has resulted in more than 90 per cent opting out of responsibility for their patients in the evenings and at weekends.

Despite doing less, their pay has soared by 50 per cent to an average of almost £108,000.

Responsibility for out-of-hours cover has now passed to primary care trusts.

The rules state that foreign doctors need to have basic GP training, but recent experience is not always necessary.

Their qualifications are checked by the General Medical Council and the local PCT, but no checks are in place to ensure that they are not exhausted after working long hours in their home country.

Our investigation revealed that more than a third of the 152 primary care trusts (PCTs) in England have flown in foreign GPs in the last year. Of the 146 trusts who responded, 51 have used overseas GPs in the last 12 months.

The figure has trebled since 2008 when just one in ten primary care trusts were flying in GPs from abroad. However, it is impossible to know the exact number of GPs travelling to the UK as many primary care trusts do not keep a record of their nationality.

Since there is no incentive for the doctors to put themselves out - they get the same amount of money whether they work 9-5 and are off weekends or whether they bust their hump treating patients - why should the Brits be shocked that no one wants to extend themselves and they become forced to rely on foreigners to take up the slack?

The story also highlights the questionable qualifications of many of the foreign doctors with one Nigerian doctor injecting a patient with 10 times the recommended dose of morphine. The same physician also refused to send a woman heart attack patient to the hospital.

Both patients died which is how this investigation got started.

I would think something like this is inevitable if we start dictating to doctors what they can charge their patients. It's one reason doctors here refuse Medicare patients. Of course, if everyone is on government insurance, the doctor has little choice and will take what the government offers him as far as fees are concerned and like it.

By the way, I don't mean to trash the British health care system. They seem very touchy about how badly it has failed and the last thing I want to do is piss off our cousins across the Atlantic. I'm sure everyone over there is wildly enthusiastic about their government run health care program.

I just wish Obama and the Democrats preferred importing something else from England.