The vast majority of doctors who have been struck off in the past five years in Britain were trained abroad, new figures from the General Medical Council have revealed. The figures revealed that the worst five countries from where doctors have been struck off included India from where 123 doctors were struck off followed by Egypt, 33, Nigeria, 33, Pakistan, 32 and Iraq 18.
According to the Telegraph, in total, 669 doctors have been either struck off or suspended by the GMC over the last five years. Of those, only 249 were British (37%), while 420 (63%) were trained abroad, whereas one-third of doctors on the register were trained abroad, and two-thirds in Britain
The revelations will add to concerns that NHS patients are not adequately protected from health professionals from countries where training is less rigorous than in the UK, and from those who are unfamiliar with basic medical practices in this country, the report said. In recent years, a series of cases have raised concerns about the competence and language skills of overseas doctors, the report added.
According to the report, the country with the best record is Hong Kong. Despite having an average of 773 doctors working in the UK since 2008, none have been struck off or disciplined by the GMC. Similarly, New Zealand has had an average of 600 doctors working in Britain, but none have had those measures taken against them. Next best were Iran, Slovakia and the United States. There are around 253,000 doctors on the medical register. Around 92,000 were trained abroad, an increase of around 2,000 over the past year. Of those, more than 25,000 were trained in Europe and around 67,000 were trained in other countries.
According to the report, corruption in medicine remains common in India, most often in the form of bribes to gain access to treatment. In 2010, the president of the Medical Council of India was accused of accepting bribes to certify medical colleges, which did not meet basic standards, the report added.