More than 8,000 overseas nurses have been recruited by the NHS in the last 10 months to help fill gaps on overstretched hospital wards, The Independent can reveal.
Health service bosses launched a worldwide search to recruit nurses after the first wave of the pandemic last year – when staffing levels were dangerously stretched to cope with the numbers of critically ill patients.
The recruitment of 8,100 nurses from other countries between April and January has been labelled “ethically dubious” during the coronavirus pandemic and at a time when the World Health Organisation has warned the world is short of six million nurses.
The NHS aims to bring in up to 1,000 nurses a month in the year ahead.
Additional testing and genomic sequencing is being used in the SW11 and SW15 postcodes, the Department of Health and Social Care announced, including door-to-door testing in some areas and testing people without symptoms.