Supporting International Medical Graduates in the NHS
sunset in florence


international medical graduates
UK Practice

How to Cite

Bogle, R., Lasoye, T., Winn, S., Ebdon, C., Shah, D., Quadry, R., Yanga, M., Szram, J., Mehta, A., & Menon, G. (2020). Supporting International Medical Graduates in the NHS: Experiences from the pre-COVID and COVID environment. The Physician, 6(2).


International Medical Graduates represent a significant part of the UK medical workforce. Often highly qualified in their home countries, they arrive in the NHS without the experience of either system or culture. Their chance of success is determined by the orientation program and governance structures are in place to support them. In this report, we describe two structures we designed independently to support IMGs from recruitment through to their transition into working in the NHS. We describe the Epsom St Helier Academy and King’s College Orientation Programs in the pre-COVID and COVID19 era.  Our programs offer a blueprint for other healthcare organisations looking to improve the integration and experience of IMGs in the NHS.

Peer reviewed by Simon Gregory & Vijay Nayar


Kehoe A, McLachlan J, Metcalf J, Forrest S, Carter M, Illing J. Supporting international medical graduates’ transition to their host‐country: realist synthesis. Med Educ. 2016 Oct;50(10):1015–32.

Valero-Sanchez I, McKimm J, Green R. A helping hand for international medical graduates. BMJ [Internet]. 2017 Nov 24 [cited 2020 Jul 8];359. Available from:

General Medical Council (Great Britain). The state of medical education and practice in the UK, 2014. [Internet]. 2014 [cited 2020 Aug 1]. Available from:

Bhat M, Ajaz A, Zaman N. Difficulties for international medical graduates working in the NHS. BMJ [Internet]. 2014 May 12 [cited 2020 Aug 1];348. Available from:

Huijskens EGW, Hooshiaran A, Scherpbier A, van der Horst F. Barriers and facilitating factors in the professional careers of international medical graduates. Med Educ. 2010 Aug;44(8):795–804.

Morrow G, Rothwell C, Burford B, Illing J. Cultural dimensions in the transition of overseas medical graduates to the UK workplace. Medical Teacher. 2013 Oct 1;35(10):e1537–45.

Baker D, Robson J. Communication training for international graduates. The Clinical Teacher. 2012;9(5):325–9.

Why are more black and minority ethnic people dying from Covid-19 in hospital? – Race Equality Foundation [Internet]. [cited 2020 Aug 1]. Available from:

Cook T, Kursumovic E, April 2020 SL. Exclusive: deaths of NHS staff from covid-19 analysed [Internet]. Health Service Journal. [cited 2020 May 23]. Available from:

Rimmer A. Covid-19: Two thirds of healthcare workers who have died were from ethnic minorities. BMJ [Internet]. 2020 Apr 23 [cited 2020 May 24];369. Available from:

Who’s at higher risk from coronavirus (COVID-19) [Internet]. 2020 [cited 2020 Aug 1]. Available from:

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Copyright (c) 2020 Array