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Addressing the challenges facing refugee doctors in the UK

Stewart, Emma (2007) Addressing the challenges facing refugee doctors in the UK. Local Economy, 22 (4). pp. 409-417. ISSN 0269-0942

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Abstract

Inclusion in the labour market is one key element of the UK Home Office refugee integration strategy. Refugees in the UK are a diverse group and represent multiple occupations and professions. One particular group of interest is refugee doctors. The British Medical Association (BMA) estimates that there are around 2000 refugee doctors in the UK. This highly skilled professional group represents a potentially valuable human resource to the National Health Service (NHS). Indeed, minimal investment is required to benefit from the considerable medical experience and skills that refugee doctors bring to the UK. Professionally qualified refugees, such as doctors and dentists, nevertheless face a number of obstacles to economic integration. This includes recognition of qualifications, training and employment regulations. For many refugee doctors these hurdles have led to professional disappointment, frustration and humiliation. In recognising and seeking to address such barriers to employment, a number of specific national and local policy initiatives in the UK have been implemented to promote the economic inclusion of refugee doctors.