NHS England has announced plans to expand the GP workforce through an accelerated international recruitment programme.
Working with partners, the organisation is seeking to recruit around 600 overseas doctors into general practice in 2017-18 and at least 2,000 doctors over the next three years, up from an initial target of 500 doctors by 2020-21.
“NHS England will be accelerating an international GP recruitment programme to help address a current skills shortage in this sector.“
Recruitment firms are being asked to join a framework to support the programme, while a dedicated GP International Recruitment Office is being established to organise and run the scaled-up programme.
The initial focus will be on doctors from the European Economic Area, while the Royal College of GPs and the General Medical Council will look to streamline the GP registration process for doctors from other nations with similar training approaches, starting with Australia.
Dr Arvind Madan, NHS England's director of primary care, said: "This scheme will deliver new recruits to help improve services for patients and reduce some of the pressure on hard working GPs across the country."
This will help the government to meet its General Practice Forward View goal of having 5,000 more GPs and 5,000 more medical professionals working in general practice by 2020.
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