Continuing NHS Opportunities For Spanish Nurses

By Editorial 13 November, 2013

The UK's National Health Service is continuing to provide employment opportunities for nurses from Spain and Portugal, as hospital chiefs seek to save costs and fill staffing gaps.

Within the past month, hospitals in Cumbria have been liaising with overseas nurses and their British colleagues in Birmingham, while the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals Trust has announced that it looking for temporary workers from overseas to cover the winter months.

Hiring staff from abroad is cheaper than using UK agency staff.

In October, the Nursing Times reported that a Freedom of Information request had shown that 40 of England's 105 hospital trusts have recruited foreign staff in the past year, and that a further 41 planned to do so in the next 12 months. There were 472 recruits from Spain, and 503 from Portugal.

The trend goes back to 2000, when then-Health Secretary Alan Milburn signed a formal agreement with Spain on cooperation over recruitment. The number of recruits from Spain and Portugal increased four-fold between 2006 and 2011, as economic conditions in those countries declined.

Nurses who wish to work in the UK have to be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council. According to NHS, registration with the council does not require evidence of ability to communicate in English, although NHS organizations may require nurses to pass an English-language test.

Tags: Portugal | United Kingdom | Spain | Expats | Working Abroad | Work | Working Abroad | Working Abroad |


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