latest health care news

15.11.17

Ministers must commit to permanent status for ‘vital’ EU staff, says Keogh

It is not inevitable that EU staff leave the NHS because of Brexit, but the government should commit to permanent status for workers.

This was the message from NHS England’s national medical director, Sir Bruce Keogh, who urged ministers to give workers a reason to stay and continue their “vital contribution” to the service.

Speaking to NHE during a visit to Manchester, the outgoing director was backed up by Jon Rouse, chief officer of the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership.

On the back of announcements yesterday that a fifth of the EU doctors who make up the NHS have made plans to leave the country, Rouse said action needed to be taken soon or things would only worsen.

Yesterday the Royal College of GPs also addressed the issue, urging the government to make the NHS workforce a Brexit “top priority” in order to combat a potential staff exodus.

Keogh told NHE that the health service needed support from the government to ensure workers know how important they are to the system.

“What would be really helpful is a very clear statement from the government that people from the EU who work in the NHS would have permanent status in this country,” he added.

“What we are seeing is that the number of nurses wanting to come and work in England from the EU is dwindling, and we know that a number of doctors are now feeling unwelcome.

“These people make a vital contribution to our NHS and they need to understand that they are valued by the political leaders of this country.”

Rouse agreed, adding that the situation would only deteriorate if action is not taken quickly by central government.

“It is going to get worse unless we begin to see some very clear commitments to how this transition is going to be managed,” he continued.

“We cannot afford to lose those people, it is as simple as that. We are doing a lot of overseas recruitment from other parts of the world, but we need there to be a confidence for EU workers that they are welcome, that they are a critical part of our workforce and that we want them to stay. We need to be giving those messages very clearly.”

Both Keogh and Rouse spent some time yesterday speaking to NHE about the need for a single commissioning process within the care sector. They agreed that an integrated system of trusts and local authorities working together with pooled resources and budget would be the future of social care.

Top image: Lance B

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an NHE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

featured articles

View all News

last word

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad, president of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), sits down with National Health Executive as part of our Last Word Q&A series. Would you talk us throu more > more last word articles >

health service focus

View all News

comment

NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

23/09/2019NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

Reason to celebrate as NHS says watching rugby can be good for your mental ... more >
Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >

interviews

Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

24/10/2019Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

Today, speaking at the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) annual... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

NHS at 72: Managing mental health services going forward

03/07/2020NHS at 72: Managing mental health services going forward

Sean Duggan, Chief Executive of the Mental Health Network Let’s take this opportunity to reflect on the amazing achievements of our health system over the past few ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

editor's comment

26/06/2020Adapting and Innovating

Matt Roberts, National Health Executive Editorial Lead. NHE May/June 2020 Edition We’ve been through so much as a health sector and a society in recent months with coronavirus and nothing can take away from the loss and difficulties that we’ve faced but it vital we also don’t disregard the amazing efforts we’ve witnessed. Staff have gone above and beyond, whole hospitals and trusts have flexed virtually at will to meet demand and pressures and we’ve... read more >