Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 26°C

min temp: 16°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs have arrived. See the latest

Pigs Gone Wild

news here.

Suffolk/UK: Poulter outlines new language tests for EU doctors

13:41 24 February 2013

Dr Dan Poulter

Dr Dan Poulter

Archant

FOREIGN doctors who want to work for the NHS in England will have to prove they can speak English well enough to treat patients, the Government has confirmed.

The move was confirmed by health minister and Central Suffolk MP Dr Daniel Poulter – and comes five years after a Suffolk-based out of hours service employed a German locum GP who prescribed an overdose which led to the death of a Cambridgeshire pensioner.

Doctors coming to the UK from outside the EU already face strict language tests.

But those from within the European Economic Area are said to have registered to work in the NHS without being asked if they can speak English properly.

The General Medical Council (GMC) pushed for stronger language testing following the case of David Gray, who died in Cambridgeshire in 2008.

He died after German doctor Daniel Ubani administered 10 times the normal dose of diamorphine.

Dr Ubani admitted being exhausted after getting only a couple of hours sleep before starting his shift in the UK, and said he was confused about the difference between drugs used here and in Germany.

His poor English meant he was refused work by the NHS in one part of the country but was later accepted.

The Government is proposing to give the GMC new powers to prevent doctors from being granted a licence to practise medicine in the UK where concerns arise about their ability to speak English.

Ministers are also introducing a single national list which every GP will have to be on before treating NHS patients. Previously every Primary Care Trust held a list of GPs.

Dr Poulter said: “Patients should be able to understand and be understood by their doctor if we are to give them the best care they deserve.

“These new checks will ensure that all doctors who want to work in the NHS can speak proficient English and to prevent those who can’t from treating patients.”

He added: “There are lots of excellent doctors from around the world working in the NHS – this is simply about protecting patients and having proper checks on a doctor’s ability to speak English.

“By introducing these steps we will be able to put an end to doctors treating patients without proper checks on their language.”

1 comment

  • 5 years for a politician to make a decision that doctors can speak English, How about using British doctors ?

    Report this comment

    this is what we pay tax for

    Monday, February 25, 2013

Stock image of a fire engine.

Firefighters are currently at the scene of a combine harvester fire in Hoxne.

Suffolk Police PCSOs (stock picture)

Two new PCSOs will be patrolling the streets of Bury St Edmunds from next January in a new step for local policing.

The scene as emergency services mounted a rescue at Sea Palling. Photo: Contributed.

A man in his 50s has died and another in his 20s was resuscitated after they got into difficulty in the water at Sea Palling.

Eastbound A14 traffic near the Copdock junction. Image: Keith Mindham

Drivers are currently experiencing long delays after a car crashed into the central reservation on the A14 eastbound at Nacton this evening.

Andy Beckwith

A former Essex man who went missing in Gibraltar has been found “in good health”, police have said.

A motorist involved in a crash on the A14 in which a teenager died will live with the “huge remorse” for the rest of his life, a court has heard.

Brendan Wright. Pic: Essex Police.

A Colchester man has been reported missing to police.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24