Changes to UK Approach to International Recruitment of Health Workers | Nutrition Fit



The UK has updated its code of practice (CoP) for the international recruitment of health and social care staff, to align with the World Health Organization’s (WHO) global code of practice.

The move widens the global market from which the UK can ethically recruit, and will provide increasing numbers of international staff with the opportunity to come and work in the UK’s health and social care sectors.

The CoP sets out how the UK can work collaboratively with governments from around the world, forming partnerships to benefit health and social care workers, their country of origin and the UK. It clearly sets out responsibilities for recruiters, employers and the government on how to maintain ethical recruitment on an ongoing basis and will ensure countries with the weakest health systems are protected, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.

To align with the WHO, the new code refers to the WHO Health Workforce Support and safeguard List (2020) of 47 countries where active recruitment cannot be undertaken.

This replaces the previous UK-held list of 152 countries, and removes confusion which can arise from the UK holding a separate list of countries. UK recruiters are not permitted to actively recruit from these countries unless there is a government to government agreement in place for managed recruitment.

The updated CoP will:

  • ensure international recruits will be treated fairly and be provided with the appropriate support.

  • provide safeguards against active recruitment from 47 countries on the WHO Health Workforce Support and Safeguards List.

  • set out how the UK is supporting countries with the most pressing health and social care workforce challenges.

Together with plans to increase UK-trained nurses, an increase in health and social staff from overseas will help to meet the government’s manifesto commitment for 50,000 more nurses by 2024, said the Department of Health and Social Care.

This article originally appeared on Univadis, part of the Medscape Professional Network.


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