In what will be a huge relief for NRI nurses working in Britain, the government has included nursing as a profession in the shortage occupation list, which means that some 30,000 overseas nurses including thousands from India who faced the axe under new immigration rules, will not have to leave the UK.
Britain’s NHS had earlier announced that according to rules that were to be confirmed a nurse can stay in the UK only if the nurse earns a minimum of 35000 pounds a year – the salary of a senior nurse.
The government has now announced a temporary change and proposes to add nurses to the government shortage occupation list on an interim basis that means nurses from outside the European Economic Area that apply will have their applications for nursing posts prioritised. ”The advisory committee will review the relaxation rule and give further evidence to the government by February 2016.
The announcement will not please India however as the health ministry in Delhi was hoping to benefit from the policy and attract returning nurses with jobs.
India has a shortage of 2.34 million nurses.