Junior Doctor Crisis: Why Hundreds of Doctors are Considering Relocating to the Gulf.
In recent months, the consultants in our Healthcare team have noticed a significant number of GP’s and hospital doctors from the UK applying for roles in the Gulf. Many have started the process of applying to the GMC for certificates that enable them to work abroad, while others are leaving the NHS to seek employment abroad for the shorter working hours and a tax free salary. Of course, the Gulf is an appealing destination for many people, with good weather all year round, outstanding medical facilities, tax free salaries and additional benefits which include subsidies for housing, utilities and transport. Increasingly our international partners are able to offer prospective new employees the work-life balance that seems to be less attainable in their current positions in the UK.
The proposed changes to junior doctor’s working conditions in the UK has been a deciding factor for many. Nearly 3,500 NHS doctors have started the process of relocating for work since ministers decided to impose new working contracts on trainee doctors. With a basic salary of approximately £22,500 a year, many junior doctors rely on the additional income that out-of-hours pay provides to subsidise their salary. As a result of the changes, a junior doctor working on a Saturday evening will now be paid at the same rate as any other weekday; losing as much as 30% of their income and facing ever more challenging and stressful work environments due to the increase in working hours.
As of late November the 24-hour strike by junior doctors has been called off, with negotiations between The British Medical Association and the UK Government at a standstill for the time being. All parties involved have until early January to propose their ideas in moving forward to find a mutually agreeable position on a range of issues. It will be interesting to see how the situation develops over the next few weeks.
In light of these issues, more doctors (senior and junior) are considering a move abroad as a guarantee of steady employment. However, relocating is not a decision to be taken lightly and there are many factors to consider. It’s important to do your research and see what opportunities are available to you before making a final decision.
At Cavendish Professionals, we are able to assist doctors wishing to explore the Middle Eastern Healthcare market. It is very important to us that we help all of our candidates to understand the professional and personal implications of relocating. As a result we are transparent in our approach, providing advice on a number of issues ranging from the best time to move house, the qualifications you need and your ability to re-enter your home market after a period of time abroad. We genuinely care for our candidates, and will never advise you to make a move that we don’t feel is right for you.
If you are interested in moving to the Middle East or to find out more about the process of relocating abroad, get in touch for a confidential discussion.