It has been reported that the level
of English among some foreign doctors is very poor that they cannot communicate
well with the patients. Several patients and staff members have complained
about this problem to the hospital authorities.
88,327 doctors out of Britain's
239,000 qualified medics are trained overseas. Doctors from India and Pakistan have
similar training to doctors from England, however due to changes in the NHS
recruitment process and the drop in the value of the pound many doctors now prefer
to work in countries like Australia and New Zealand.
The application process for
consultants involves testing their English and communication skills with
simulation of a meeting with a patient. But authorities cannot keep a check on
the language skills of locums who work on a temporary basis at hospitals. Since a long time the British Medical Association
(BMA) has asked for language and competency tests for foreign doctors but this
cannot be implemented as it would mean contravention of freedom to travel and
work law of the EU.