In two separate articles in The Guardian, Denis Campbell and Kim Thomas profile a study by the Institute for Employment Studies that highlights the effect that Brexit could have on the NHS shortage of nurses.
“The current and projected shortage of nurses has left the NHS nursing workforce in England particularly vulnerable to any disruption to its recruitment pipelines, both from the EEA and outside of it,” says the study, which was led by MigrationWork Director Dr Rachel Marangozov.
“Whatever form Brexit eventually takes, it could well lead to a reduced supply of labour from the EU. Given the current uncertainty around the status of EU workers, many EU nurses may voluntarily choose not to take up positions in the UK, while those already working here could make plans to return home if they feel unwelcome or no longer see a future in the UK.”
The uncertainty and perceived hostility towards migrants may put some EU nurses off: “What are you going to say? ‘Come and work in London or the east of England – we can’t guarantee your future status, but come and work for us.’ It’s a very difficult sell.”
- The Guardian: Brexit could make NHS shortage of nurses worse (20 December 2016)
- The Guardian: What impact will Brexit have on nursing? (28 February 2017)
- Read the IES paper: Beyond Brexit: Assessing key risks to the nursing workforce in England.