18 doctors from overseas have this week joined Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust to become NHS doctors through the Medical Support Worker programme.
The Medical Support Worker role provides a gateway for international medical graduates and refugee doctors from overseas who come to live and work in England being fast-tracked into the health service and supported to become registered NHS doctors, while working under supervision.
Medical Support Workers already have the experience and training that, once registered, means they are well placed to move to more senior positions such as Physicians, Surgeons and Paediatricians.
Dr Elizabeth Thomas, Deputy Medical Director, Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted and proud to be able to support our medical colleagues from Myanmar and India through the Medical Support Worker scheme.
“The scheme gives refugee doctors and those from overseas valuable experience of working in the NHS and means that we benefit from their expertise and skills while they undergo the necessary checks and training to work as doctors in the United Kingdom.
“We know that the people of Torbay and South Devon will join us in making our new colleagues welcome. We look forward to helping them settle into life here and enjoy our beautiful countryside and everything else we have to offer.
Nang, who was a medical officer in Myanmar, said: “I am very excited for this opportunity. I have always wanted to work for the NHS and I am thankful for this experience.
Jubairath, who was a doctor in India, said: “I graduated in 2021 as a doctor in my own country. I am keen to use my medical knowledge and patient experience here in the NHS.”
Myo, who was a doctor in Myanmar, said: “I wanted to come to England and work for the NHS as there are many more opportunities than in Myanmar. I am very excited to learn and see what my future brings with the NHS.”
Professor Sir Stephen Powis, NHS medical director, said: “Since its foundation in 1948, the NHS has relied on the skill and dedication of doctors, nurses and other staff from around the world and these medics – including those from places like Ukraine and Myanmar – are no different, as the health service supports those fleeing persecution to build a new life.
“The Medical Support Worker role is an example of how the NHS is doing everything it can to tackle the significant workforce challenges it faces, rightly supporting hundreds of highly skilled and experienced medics to join the health service as quickly as possible.
“Colleagues taking part in the programme are supported to help grow their own skills and move into roles as senior clinicians, like gynaecologists or A&E doctors, but in the meantime they bring so much to the teams they join whether it’s supporting surgery, boosting capacity or helping to develop and train other staff.”
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