Indian docs and nurses are amongst 14,000 candidates from the world over which might be set to profit from a one-year price waiver for visa extensions introduced on Friday for frontline employees coping with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The UK House Workplace stated that the free one-year visa extensions might be mechanically granted to eligible abroad well being and care employees and their dependents whose visas have been on account of expire earlier than October 1.
The extension will cowl healthcare professionals working within the Nationwide Well being Service (NHS) and the impartial well being and care sector, which incorporates a lot of Indian professionals.
“The dedication and ability of abroad well being and care employees who’re main the UK’s battle in opposition to coronavirus is actually extraordinary,” stated UK House Secretary Priti Patel.
“Hundreds of them have helped save numerous lives all through this pandemic and are actually taking part in a significant half within the massively profitable vaccination rollout. Our provide of free visa extensions reveals how our nation values the contributions of those heroes,” she stated.
Periodic free visa extensions for well being employees have been introduced since final yr on the peak of the pandemic and the House Workplace stated it has prolonged the visas of greater than 10,000 individuals throughout the UK.
The newest extension is meant for docs, nurses, paramedics, midwives, occupational therapists, psychologists and others to have the ability to proceed their essential work within the battle in opposition to coronavirus as their visas might be prolonged for a yr, freed from all charges and fees, together with the Immigration Well being Surcharge.
“Our abroad well being and care employees make such a significant contribution to our well being system and have been a key a part of the battle in opposition to the pandemic. They’re defending our family members and vaccinating the general public in order that we will save lives and return to normalcy,” stated UK Well being Secretary Matt Hancock.
“To assist these employees from abroad, we’re extending their visas to supply safety whereas they proceed to deal with this virus,” he stated.
The House Workplace stated that these benefiting from this extension might want to full a easy on-line kind to confirm their identification, with employers requested to verify eligibility.
It additionally highlighted that the brand new Well being and Care Visa, which launched in August final yr, would make it “simpler, cheaper and faster” for the worldwide well being professionals to work within the NHS, the social care sector and for these organisations which offer commissioned providers to the NHS. Thus far, greater than 20,000 individuals have been granted a visa by means of the route.
Final yr, the House Workplace additionally expanded the Bereavement Scheme to all NHS, well being and social care employees to assist the household of frontline healthcare employees who die within the line of frontline duties.