Is the NHS facing “brain drain”?

Sara Sabin Posted by Sara Sabin on April 07, 2016


With many tempting medical opportunities offered to doctors overseas, there are fears that doctors passionate about their work but still wanting a work-life balance may look to work overseas.

The BBC interviewed various doctors including Doctor Seebaluk, a young doctor who is planning to move to Australia permanently with his fiancee.

However much one loves the practice of medicine, doctors’ also need to take care of their own wellbeing. As it is, working on calls and weekends plus constant exams takes its toll on a work-life balance and family time. With the situation due to worsen, is it any wonder passionate doctors are looking for another solution?

8,000 CCPS requests were made to the GMC in 2015 (with a spike in September) and, already in the first few months of 2016, there have been 2,200 applications. There have always been doctors going to work overseas to get experience but whereas many of them would move back to the UK after a temporary stint abroad, we may be seeing more permanent moves.

Dr Thea Bishop, one of the doctor’s interviewed states that:

Working in Australia, I feel valued, I am rested in between my shifts. I can choose when to take leave. I still work incredibly hard as it is a very demanding job but I come into work every day enthusiastic, and that is something I didn’t feel working in the NHS.

Working here allows me to care for my patients safely, and sensitively. I don’t want to have a rushed consultation, especially if I’m breaking bad news.

Many of my colleagues back in the UK are leaving the profession altogether.

I know that where I work we receive lots of inquiries from doctors in the UK looking for jobs in Australia.


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