Thousands more overseas doctors will be able to come and work in the NHS after Theresa May took advice from cabinet colleagues to do away with limits that hospital bosses had criticised.
The relaxation of immigration rules, which is due to be announced imminently, represents a victory for Jeremy Hunt and Sajid Javid and follows an active and passionate campaign by NHS organisations and medical groups.
They have been arguing that medics should be taken out of the cap on skilled workers allowed to work in Britain, in order to help tackle the NHS’s deepening workforce crisis.
Hunt, the health and social care secretary, and Javid, the home secretary, have been privately lobbying the prime minister to ease restrictions that between November and April denied more than 2,300 doctors from outside the European Economic Area the chance to work in the NHS.
Under the current immigration system the number of non-EEA skilled workers across the board able to come and work in Britain on a tier-2 visa through a certificate of sponsorship is capped at 20,700 a year – a ceiling set by the Home Office.
Doctors and Nurses wishing to work in the NHS at all levels will have to achieve a minimum 7 band score in the IELTS exam. For more information on help with the IELTS exam email firstname.lastname@example.org