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Language checks on EU doctors heading to Britain expected by June

Doctors must prove English proficiency to work in Great Britain

Doctors must prove English proficiency to work in Great Britain

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “Language checks on EU doctors heading to Britain expected by June” was written by James Meikle, for theguardian.com on Tuesday 25th February 2014 18.17 UTC

New language checks on EU doctors coming to work in Britain are expected to begin in June, with the medics having to prove their proficiency in English before treating patients.

Those who cannot prove their command of the language by other means will face tests. Such checks already apply to doctors arriving in the UK from other parts of the world, but higher pass marks on the tests will now be introduced for all overseas doctors.

The changes by the General Medical Council (GMC), which regulates the profession, tie in with other measures introduced by ministers to improve vetting. Shortcomings in such processes were most notoriously exposed in the wake of German doctor Daniel Ubani's accidental killing of 70-year-old David Gray in Cambridgeshire six years ago.

The GMC chief executive, Niall Dickson, reporting strong support in a consultation on the changes, said: "Doctors who want to practise in the UK must be able to communicate effectively in English to ensure the safety of their patients.

"These new measures to ensure doctors from other European countries can communicate in English, combined with the higher test score requirements, will help us strengthen protection for patients. They will also bring about a greater degree of fairness between our requirements for European doctors and for those from outside Europe."

Other changes to GMC powers include a new category in fitness to practise cases in which a doctor can be found impaired because he or she does not have the necessary knowledge of English, the power to make doctors already on the GMC register undergo an English language assessment if a relevant, serious complaint is made about them, and the power to indefinitely suspend doctors who don't develop sufficient English language skills to treat patients safely.

New regulations allowing the changes are on their way through parliament.

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About Carl William Brown

I'm Carl William Brown a holistic teacher, a webmaster, a trader, and a writer of aphorisms and essays. I have written more than 9,000 original quotations and at present I'm also working at my only novel, Fort Attack, which is also a wide and open blog project. At the moment I'm teaching English in a secondary school, but up to now I have done a lot of other things as well, both in business, educational, sport and social fields. Some years ago, in 1997 following the examples of the Rotary or the Lyons Clubs I founded the Daimon Club Organization to promote every sort of activities, creativity, art, literature, new technologies, informatics, business and marketing, public health and education and to meet new friends with these kind of interests.
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