The UK government said today that it will simplify the process of moving immigrants working in the National Health Service (NHS) to the UK to fill the gap in the number of employees after Brexit.
The Conservative government is planning to introduce an Australian-style points system after the Brexit in 2021 to more strictly control immigration. Political commentators say immigration control is one of the key factors that influenced British support for Brexit three years ago.
The future of the NHS is one of the key issues in the UK campaign. The UK will hold a general election next month.
Of the 1.2 million health care workers employed by the NHS, approximately 153,000 are non-British nationals. Critics say that after the Brexit, EU citizens are unable to move freely within the UK, leaving the NHS with a large number of indispensable employees. The NHS is currently one of the largest employers in the world.
At the same time, the NHS is worried that many health care workers from all over the world, especially nursing homes, will not be able to meet the strict salary requirements under the new system. At present, about 52,000 medical staff of the NHS are Asian.
The British government said that the new NHS work visa will be able to control immigration and ensure that there is no shortage of professionals in medical services.
The quick get-on work visa program will cut costs by half to £464 (about NT$18,000) and allow applicants to pass the review process first and more quickly.
The British Home Secretary, Priti Patel, stated: “These measures are included in our planned Australian-style immigration points to the system, which will allow us to control the number of people while continuing to recruit the necessary professionals such as nurses.”