Thousands of foreign doctors could be recruited to help break NHS strikes
THOUSANDS of overseas doctors could be recruited to help break crippling NHS strikes.
Health Secretary Steve Barclay is looking at temporarily hiring foreign medics.
He could ask the General Medical Council to fast-track registrations and get them working by earlyyear.
The option is being discussed in Whitehall but there is no official plan in place.
Such a move would need signing off by PM Rishi Sunak and Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, with most of the doctors likely to come from India.
Long-running industrial action is being taken by consultants and junior doctors.
The British Medical Association union is demanding a 35 per cent pay hike for junior medics.
Last night a Whitehall source said the overseas doctors could improve cover, limit strikers making up lost earnings with overtime and generally help to provide a better service.
They said: “We are now regularly reduced to Christmas Day cover, which does not even include vital services like chemotherapy. That is just unacceptable.”
The BMA says members are willing to continue strike action beyond the next election.
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