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NHS must prepare for new generation of women doctors

NHS must prepare for new generation of women doctors, says HCL Thames Medics

HCL Thames Medics, a leading UK supplier of locum doctors to the NHS on the National Framework, today called for NHS employers to be proactive in supporting a new generation of women doctors who want to work flexibly.

The Company, which is a part of HCL plc, one of the UKs leading health and social care recruiters, was responding to calls from the British Medical Association for the Department of Health to take account of the fact that the majority of medical graduates are now female, statistically more likely to take maternity leave or go part-time.

Women doctors are more likely to choose flexible working patterns such as locum work, said Kirsten Simcoe, Managing Director of HCL Thames Medics. She commented: NHS employers must support women doctors who choose to work as locums, and the Department of Health must make procurement procedures simpler. At the moment some of our clients say they have to overcome a lot of red tape before they can procure locums to fill shifts locums who are on a par with their full time counterparts in terms of qualifications and experience.

She continued: With more women entering the medical profession, we anticipate a continuing rise in the numbers of doctors making locum work a career choice, so we have to simplify things for them and their employers. Theres also an economic argument in favour of the NHS using more locum doctors they tend to work out cheaper in the longer term as they dont incur hidden added costs such as pension contribution and other public sector benefits.

A study published by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) last year forecast that the majority of UK doctors in both hospitals and general practice will be female after 2017.

Simcoe concluded: Its important that we all adapt to the changing face of the medical profession not only for doctors but, more importantly, for the NHS and the thousands who use it every day.

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