Foreign doctors unable to get New Zealand hospital jobs

Foreign doctors unable to get New Zealand hospital jobs

Foreign doctors unable to get New Zealand hospital jobs

Qualified health professionals aiming to live and work in New Zealand are falling foul of backlogs and confusion, preventing them from starting work.

Of foreign-trained doctors applying for registration in New Zealand, those who graduated in the UK, non-American or non-Western European medical schools must pass an examination before taking up a position. A number who passed are now claiming discrimination is preventing them from finding employment.

According to the country’s Medical Council, there are now limits on the number of post-graduate training positions and internships in New Zealand hospitals. The health authority states the reason is that more qualified health professionals are now graduating from the country’s two medical schools and choosing to stay in the home country and work.

In addition, according to Health Workforce NZ’s CEO Des Gorman, local recently-qualified doctors are slow in making the decision to specialise and are remaining in their lower-level jobs. According to Gorman, only 582 hospital training positions are available at present, with 400 local graduates getting first pick.

Gorman is advocating an end to overseas junior doctor recruitment, at least for the rest of 2014. Chair of the Medical Council Andrew Connolly also believes it’s unfair to encourage immigrants to uproot their lives when there are few jobs to fill, and has assured those who’ve passed the exam that they will be employed.

Assurances, however, aren’t of any use to Venezuelan doctor Morella Lascurian and many like her who’ve been waiting months with no sign of even an interview.She is one of 31 foreign-trained doctors who’re still on the waiting list.

Lascurian says that the Advanced Choice of Employment system is largely to blame, as it only matches candidates from Australian and New Zealand medical schools. She believes the system is discriminatory against doctors trained outside the two countries, many of whom left senior positions in their home countries in order to emigrate.

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