Migrant doctors are key to UK health system : Malcolm Grant, Chairman of the NHS England
Updated on: 07 Jun 2016
Bilateral talks between India and the UK in 2015 mean India could see an influx of more than £1 billion (about ₹10,000 crore) of private investment in India's healthcare sector.
While the partnership, under which about 11 Indo-UK Institutes of Health are to be set up that will provide training to doctors, nurses and allied medical staff; harsh visa restrictions by the UK may prove to be an impediment.
Malcolm Grant, Chairman of the NHS England, who is leading a delegation of 23 British companies and NHS Trusts looking to provide services in India, however, hoped 'political' visa issues won't get in the way of doctors going to the UK. According to studies, more than 25 per cent of the doctors in the UK are not British and about seven per cent of consultants are of Indian origin. Grant tells BusinessLine that migration of qualified staff is central for the UK's health system. Edited excerpts:
Can you tell us the nature of the Indo-UK partnership and about the proposed institutes?
There are already a lot of partnerships going on between India and the UK. It is part of our history. What we are trying to do is work alongside the Indian government and the State governments for what is a common vision — providing universal healthcare on an affordable basis. This requires investments in hospitals; this is where the Indo-UK institutes will be focusing their attention, and also in primary health. A part of the proposal will be a number of polyclinics, which will have a hub-and-spoke model and will reach out to remote communities, particularly through technologies such as telemedicine to be able to give early and more convenient access to healthcare.
We've been trying increasingly to keep people out of hospitals because admission to hospitals is an admission to failure.
We are also doing work on data analytics, electronic records, diabetes care, and lots of partnerships on clinical and surgical front.
You had meetings with high-level government officials. What was the outcome?