Immigration rules in the UK are to be relaxed temporarily in a bid to recruit and keep more staff.
The government has announced that immigration rules in the UK are to be relaxed temporarily for overseas workers in a bid to recruit and keep more staff.
Care assistants, social care workers and home care workers are to become eligible for a health and care visa for a one year period, with the government saying this will make it easier to fill gaps in workforces.
The announcement follows warnings that the sector was in for “severe and increasing” problems with hiring and retaining staff after Brexit.
Care workers will be added to the shortage occupation list, which helps migrants to obtain work visas in sectors where there are shortages.
The temporary measures are expected to begin early next year and will be in place for one year before they are reviewed again, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.
Since Brexit, social care workers from EU countries are no longer automatically eligible to work in the UK and are required to apply for a visa instead.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid said of the visa: “It is vital we continue to do all we can to protect the social care sector during the pandemic and beyond.”
“These measures, together with the series of support packages announced since September, will help us ensure short term sustainability and success for our long-term vision to build social care back better.”
Home Secretary Priti Patel said the care sector was experiencing “unprecedented challenges,” and that the change to the health and care visa would “alleviate some of the pressures currently being experienced.”
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