Letters

Published: 16/09/2004, Volume II4, No. 5923 Page 20

I may not have the same roots as Peter Ramrayka (Feedback, pages 18-19, 12 August), but having worked in African healthcare for eight years I hope I have something to contribute on overseas recruiting.

Many developing countries struggle to provide opportunities for their well-educated workforce, with competition for a small number of good training places.

Poor rates of pay frustrate the few who get post-school qualifications.

So if our ethical sensitivities can be satisfied, then there are good reasons to encourage highquality professionals to work in the UK, for mutual benefit.

I therefore suggests that the UK government, in conjunction with imaginative educational institutions, sets up new clinical schools in developing countries and charges these to UK education or health budgets.

Differences in curriculum may also be considered for those who are serving tropical and young (host) populations. Providing the training we offer is additional to their demand, all stand to gain.

This will be a cost-effective way of ensuring a flow of high quality nurses for both host and 'importer'.

Many enterprising individuals from developed countries will find (as I did) that developing countries are much nicer places to teach, study and work.

Andy Bacon Former chief executive, Gertrude's Garden Children's Hospital Nairobi