A high number of nurses from overseas are employed within the UK, despite 20000 UK student nurses’ education being paid for by the government a year. Most of the overseas nurses are employed within the private sector . Many private nursing home companies , and NHS trusts, have set contracts with agencies who provide these nurses. Blog evidence provides such comments as “ I am newly qualified, but could not be given a job by the hospital, because they have to take so many nurses from overseas”. HEE explains that whilst some newly qualified nurses are needed, nurses who are more experienced are needed. Do nurses from overseas necessarily have compatible training and experience of UK nurses ?
Fake certificates are very easy to obtain from such countries as the Philippines, Bulgaria, and India- some of which were operating from car parks! Indeed, one may purchase one whilst living in the UK. Recto is the key to unlocking a scam of huge potential significance to nursing in the UK and elsewhere. Recto is street near Manila University where fake traders provide false passport, marriage certificates, and any fake academic qualification from around the world, forged to an expert quality. This practice also is reported to occur in Eastern Europe. .
Possessing an approved list of Universities may help, but not stop the problem. In some cases, corrupt individuals at valid Universities have sold certificates. The GMC does have an approved list of Universities for Doctors in the UK, but the NMC do not answer this question..
Certificates of all levels, including PHD , in all fields, may also be fake. Students may not have a degree at all, but come to the UK to do a higher degree. It is also possible to pay somebody to write the essay or dissertation for you , another worldwide business.
A nursing degree offers skills in essay writing, along with practical skills . Countries do not provide equivalent courses. Indeed, there are also differences in course content between UK Universities .
Overseas nurses may not have access to the same up to date equipment, or have been trained in the use of patient care plans, or treatments. Such regulations pertaining to human rights and deprivation of liberty will differ between countries, as also will attitudes towards such as pain control. So, despite NMC adaptation training in the UK offering a test or training based on individual needs, it will not necessarily address such differences .
People with fake certificates obtain full references and course descriptions, announcing that they have had full training.
An additional problem of some overseas nurses is the inability to speak or understand English. The example of the nurse who brought a bowl of cornflakes when asked for a kylie sums it up. Why should cabinets on hospital wards have to display signs to enable overseas nurses to understand what is stored in them ? Such problems with communication would be more serious regarding medication, for example. Yet, the NMC declare that it is against human rights legislation to address this issue, other than requiring overseas nurses outside the EU to complete an IELTS in their own country. If you wish to work as a nurse in Bulgaria, you must undertake a 6 months intensive course in the Bulgarian language; why does not a similar standard apply in the UK?
There is no wonder the NMC do not keep records of the origin of training of the nurses convicted at hearings, yet they do for such as sexual orientation. The GMC meanwhile do keep such records.
Do people and organisations fail to act because they fear public panic, human rights accusations, or do they support the fact that overseas nurses are cheaper and complain less? (Dimon 2013). If nurses, or any other professional, come to the UK from overseas they must be individually assessed and adequately prepared and trained.
Through neglect of this issue, we are failing to protect educational standards in all fields, and, in areas such as nursing, we are exploiting overseas nurses . Does this negate the value of all qualifications?
Carol Dimon, Lenin Nightingale c
Dimon C (2013) The Commodity of Care Cloister House Press free updates qualityofnursingcare.webs.com
Link to Lenin on twitter.