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As of 19 June 2006 a new application form will be available and required for Tier 2 work permit applications for postgraduate doctors and dentists.
Previously, an exemption was granted for all dental and medical graduates employed in "training positions" related to their field.
All non-EEA residents and those not graduated from a UK university will now be required to apply for work permits and visas in accordance with normal immigration policy.
All applications for doctors and dentists wishing to fill training posts within the NHS in the Foundation Programme, Senior House Officer, GP Registrar or Specialist Registrar level must use the new PD1 form. Appropriate Postgraduate Deans are required to submit applications for a work permit to cover the entirety of the program being attempted.
It is expected that the new forms, along with updated guide and various business and commercial notes will be available on 12 June 2006. Positions as Specialist Registrar granted prior to 07 March and which begin prior to 04 August of this year will be honored, although at their expiration any attempt at renewal will be subject to the new policy.
Career grade posts are not affected and applicants in that category should continue to use the WP1 form.
Tier 2 is comprised of skilled workers with a job offer such as doctors, nurses, dentists, teachers, and engineers. This policy change specifically changes the status of training positions as a doctor or a dentist, making them labor categories requiring a work permit rather than an exemption ( considered as 'continued training status') not requiring a work permit. The continuation of training status is reserved for graduates of UK universities now.
Excerpted points of major interest from the summary issued in a policy release by the Human Resources Directorate on the changes for the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety:
• these changes will not prevent overseas doctors and dentists from training in the UK;
• the changes bring doctors and dentists into line with the provisions for other sectors of the UK economy. This means utilizing the resident work force before recruiting from outside the EEA;
• doctors and dentists already in the UK will be able to continue to train here, if they have suitable training posts arranged, but will now be considered as in employment, rather than training;
• this group of doctors and dentists will now have the same rights as other migrant workers - for instance, work permit holders are eligible to apply for settlement in the UK after 5 years;
• overseas doctors and dentists will still be able to come and train in the UK; they will now be considered as being in employment for immigration purposes, and will therefore need to meet the requirements of an employment category of the Immigration Rules• Work Permits are granted for the duration of the contract, up to a maximum period of 5 years.
• SHO posts will be phased out from August 2007, Work Permits for SHO posts will not be granted to extend beyond 10 August 2007.
• the current cost of a Work Permit is £153, with the employer being responsible for this fee.
UK work permit exemption rescinded for medical students
06 June 2006
[ Last edited 14 June, 2006 for formatting and clarity; correction and content added. ]