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Health and care visa holders in primary care roles able to work uncapped hours in second job

by Beth Gault
1 March 2023

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Primary care health professionals, including GPs, paramedics and pharmacists, who hold a UK health and care visa are now no longer subject to restrictions on the number of hours they can work for a second employer.

The Home Office removed the additional hours cap from this week (27 February). This set down that health care professionals could only work an extra 20 hours in a different job to their main sponsored one.

Guidance now says health and care workers can work ‘as many hours as [they] like’ for a second employer without notifying the Home Office, provided that role is also eligible for a health and care worker visa.

Roles eligible for a health and care visa include:

  • medical practitioners, including GPs
  • pharmacists
  • physiotherapists
  • occupational therapists
  • nurses
  • podiatrists
  • paramedics
  • pharmaceutical technicians
  • health associate professionals
  • health service managers.

Visa holders who work more than 20 hours in a role that is not eligible for a health and care visa need to update their visa with the Home Office as before.

The exemption to the cap is in place for six months and will be reviewed again in August 2023.

A briefing from NHS Employers reminded primary care employers that they have a duty of care to monitor all working hours to ensure employees are working safely and efficiently, as well as considering their wellbeing.

It said: ‘As with all employees, it should be made clear to international recruits that there is no obligation for them to work beyond their contracted hours for any organisation.’

The full guidance can be found on the Government website.