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NHS Employers: nursing should be on the shortage occupation list

Nursing should be put on the shortage occupation list for the next two years, NHS Employers urged in a letter to Home Secretary Theresa May, published today.

This comes as the employment organisation announced that around 1,000 non-EU nurses, hoping to work in England, have been turned away so far due to “stringent Home Office rules”.

NHS Employers warned that immigration rules are compromising patient safety, and clinical services will be compromised in the coming winter months.

In response Janet Davies (pictured), chief executive and general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said: “Placing nurses on the shortage occupation list is a matter of patient safety.”

Currently on the list, which means that the professions are in high demand in the UK, are clinical radiologists, trainees in emergency medicine, core trainees in psychiatry, and specialist doctors working in accident and emergency.

Davies added: “The long-term solution to this problem is to ensure more nurses are being trained in the UK to meet demand, but until then trusts must be able to recruit the nurses they need from overseas.”