Commenting on Home Office proposals on settled status for EU workers, Dr Andrew Dearden, BMA treasurer, said:
“Ongoing uncertainty over the Government’s settled status scheme has caused a lot of anxiety for EU nationals and their families, so we are glad that the details have finally been outlined today. EU nationals play an invaluable role in health and social care in the UK and our health service would not be able to cope without them, so confirmation that anyone arriving before the end of December 2020 will have access to the same rights as those who arrived in the UK before March 2019 will be particularly useful for both NHS employers and staff. Operationally, the new system must be quick and straightforward to navigate and not an administrative burden on individuals. The Home Office must ensure that it has the capacity to manage a system responsible for registering millions of EU nationals in the UK.
“While we now have greater clarity on settled status, we still don’t know how the Government plans to manage migration from the EU after Brexit. After months of delays, we are urging the Home Office to publish its Immigration Bill and to ensure any future immigration system is flexible enough to ensure the NHS can recruit and retain doctors, researchers, and other NHS workers it needs and that the professional qualifications of medical staff continue to be recognised in the UK and in the EU.”
Notes to editors
- You can read the BMA’s briefings on Brexit and the NHS here.