Labor Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui says Kenya will send up to 20,000 nurses to the United Kingdom for work.
This follows the signing of a bilateral agreement for collaboration in the healthcare workforce between Kenya and the UK, which allows Kenyan healthcare professionals to be recruited to work in the UK.
Chelugui, who spoke when he appeared before the National Assembly's Committee on Labor and Social Welfare, said the two countries agreed to send 20,000 nurses to the UK to address a shortage of 62,000.
About 900 Kenyan nurses currently work in the National Health Service— the UK public healthcare system.
Last month, the Ministry of Labor through the National Employment Authority (NEA) opened applications for nurses seeking to work in the UK. Interested applicants have until 5:00 pm on August 27th to register through the NEA portal (https://neaims.go.ke/).
One must be a Kenyan citizen, have a diploma or bachelor’s degree in Nursing from a recognized institution, and be registered and licensed by the Nursing Council of Kenya to qualify for the program.
They are also required to have a valid Police Clearance Certificate (Certificate of Good Conduct) and not be in paid employment either in the public or private sector in Kenya.
The first batch of nurses is expected to leave the country for the UK by October 15th this year. It is estimated that 30,000 Kenyan nurses and healthcare workers are unemployed.
"Brexit is an opportunity for this country. The fact that Kenya's education system, standards, and language of instruction is English is a huge opportunity for our country. We are engaging our medical training schools to enhance capacity for the export market," said Chelugui