By: Eastern Eye Staff
Updates to the government’s Immigration Rules, announced in early March, will make it easy for workers with certain skills to obtain skilled worker visas. This is all coming as part of the new points-based immigration system, which awards prospective new migrants points depending on a range of factors, from the ability to speak English to qualifications to job offers. Seventy points are required to meet the threshold for a work visa.
In the UK, the system of health and social care has been hugely impacted by the spread of Covid-19. The country has one of the highest rates of excess death anywhere in the Europe, and a significant fraction of those excess deaths have occurred in care homes. This was especially concentrated during the first wave of the pandemic. Around 48,000 covid-related deaths were recorded between March and June 2020, of which around 40% occurred in care homes. The proportion shrank for the second wave; of the 62,000 deaths registered from November 2020 to February 2021, just 25% were in care-homes.
These numbers are, in all likelihood, underestimates. During both waves, the number of non-covid deaths also saw a significant spike. This might be in part a result of the stretching of the service beyond capacity; but a more significant contributor is undoubtedly a failure to record the disease correctly. The correlation between the two spikes is particularly close during the first wave.
All of this has made the availability of skilled nursing staff especially important. And when the existing staff are being made to work long hours under difficult conditions, their effectiveness begins to dwindle. Businesses in the care sector might investigate their options when it comes to home care insurance – since having all of those ducks in a row will provide a degree of stability when the next pandemic rolls around, and help to safeguard the business against other disrupting factors.
As far as the nation as a whole goes, the government thinks that bringing in workers from overseas will help to ease the pressure, and provide invaluable skills.
If you’re coming to Britain to perform a job that’s on the Shortage Occupation List, then you’ll be awarded an extra twenty points. In many cases, this is enough to push a new migrant over the seventy-point mark.
The shortage occupation list is the government’s means of changing the incentives, and addressing skill imbalances in the labour market while cooling down immigration to other sectors. In this case, there’s a strong need for skilled labour in the healthcare and medical professions; the country will need nurses and care workers as it recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic.