January 9, 2019 10.53 am This story is over 58 months old

Councillor on board with medical refugee scheme

Many refugees take up jobs in other professions due to lack of support

An East Lindsey District Councillor has taken up a leading role in a British Medical Association-backed project to attract refugee doctors to the area.

Councillor Sarah Parkin, who also sits on Lincolnshire County Council, was asked to join the board of the Lincolnshire Refugee Doctor Project after a previous director moved away from the area.

Councillor Parkin, who has been attending meetings in an advisory capacity, said: “I’m really privileged and honoured.

“The refugee situation internationally has been an issue I have been concerned about on a personal level for many years.”

She praised the board for its strong commitment, skill sets and ability to deliver the project.

The organisation aims to recruit refugee doctors to the county as well as support them in settling into local communities and helping them to get the skills and knowledge to pass the necessary General Medical Council examinations.

It is understood many refugees, unable to get the support needed, have taken up jobs in other professions.

The Lincolnshire group has now got a project ready to begin at Diana Princess of Wales Hospital, in Grimsby, with the hope that in the future a Lincolnshire-based scheme will also open up.

Dr Andrew Mowat, chairman of the group and Chair of Trustees of BMA Charities

Dr Andrew Mowat, chairman of the group and Chair of Trustees of BMA Charities, was happy for Councillor to join the project, adding: “It’s going to be hugely helpful to us to have someone with Sarah’s level of experience on board.

“One of the difficulties we have is knowing who to engage with in the political area and she’s very skilled with that”

A number of health services and charities are partnered with the project including the BMA and its charities, the General Medical Council, United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust, the BMA and Lincs Community Health Services.