On 4 March the UK government announced changes to the immigration rules designed to make it easier for overseas health and care staff to be recruited to the UK.
A number of health and care roles have been added to the Shortage Occupation List (SOL) including:
- laboratory technicians
- senior care workers
- nursing assistants
- health services and public health managers and directors
- residential, day and domiciliary care managers
- health professionals not elsewhere classified, such as audiologists.
Roles which feature on the SOL give people an advantage in obtaining a skilled worker visa.
A role on the SOL is worth 20 of the 70 points required to obtain a skilled worker visa in the new points-based immigration system. Combined with the mandatory criteria – having an acceptable standard of English, an offer from a licensed sponsor and the required RQF level 3 or above skill level, which are worth 50 points – will ensure people in these roles reach the 70 points.
This is part of a number of changes made under the immigration rules including confirming the graduate route will launch from Thursday 1 July, updating the skilled worker visa going rate to include a minimum hourly rate, and further building on the world-leading global talent route.
NHS Employers and the Cavendish Coalition submitted evidence to the Migration Advisory Committee in May 2020 as part of a commission to review the Shortage Occupation List. This review took place a few months before the implementation of the new points-based immigration system.