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NHS recruiting from ‘red list’ countries after Brexit loss of EU staff, says report

NHS trusts in England have increased recruitment from low-income “red list” countries to make up for the post-Brexit loss of EU staff, despite a code of practice to safeguard health services in those developing countries.

A report by the Nuffield Trust thinktank also identified shortages in vital specialist areas since Brexit, including dentistry, cardiothoracic surgery and anaesthesiology.

It found that Brexit is still causing issues with the supply of medicines in Northern Ireland despite a change in the arrangements put in place by the EU last April.

The report says that since 2021, the Northern Ireland protocol obliging EU trade rules to be followed in the region has led to a different set of medicines being available compared with the rest of the UK.

Of the 597 products specifically approved by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency since Brexit, “only eight were also approved for Northern Ireland under the same name and company”.

It also found that since 2021, 52 products had been granted marketing authorisation for Northern Ireland but not in Great Britain under the EU approvals system, including a painkiller from the Slovenian company Sandoz Farmacevtska Druzba designed to stop people dying from opiate overdoses.

The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) described the report as “deeply alarming”.

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Source: The Guardian, 7 January 2023


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