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GMC investigates why it strikes off more foreign doctors

The UK's General Medical Council (GMC) is holding an internal investigation to discover the reasons why its disciplinary measures are more likely to target foreign-trained doctors than UK-qualified ones.

The UK's General Medical Council (GMC) is holding an internal investigation to discover the reasons why its disciplinary measures are more likely to target foreign-trained doctors than UK-qualified ones.

In 2006, 35 out of 54 doctors struck off the medical register had been trained abroad. The investigation will also find out how changes to all doctors' working lives impact on patients.

The UKís Prime Minister Gordon Brown recently demanded that tighter checks of foreign doctors be made after three NHS doctors were charged with terrorism.

The GMC spokesperson admitted that overseas-trained doctors were "disproportionately represented" in its "fitness-to-practice" statistics, but was unable to say why this was.

The GMC said: "We regulate all doctors, not just overseas-trained doctors, and we are also looking at what happens when doctors who qualify in the UK move into their first clinical jobs in the UK, or when they are 'promoted' and take on extra responsibilities."

The investigation will start in Q3 2007 and the final report is expected in 2009.

10th August 2007

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