The Guardian : Romanian ambassador defends country’s contribution to NHS

Dan Mihalache addresses House of Lords inquiry into impact Brexit could have on rights of EU migrants in the UK

The Romanian ambassador to the UK has said his country has made a significant financial contribution to the NHS as a result of the number of highly qualified health workers who have moved to Britain.

Dan Mihalache said his country paid more than €100,000 to train up one medical student to become a doctor in Romania.

“That is our contribution to your National Health Service,” he told a committee of peers in the House of Lords, adding that there were 10,000 or more Romanians working in the NHS.

Mihalache argued that there were “two sides of the coin” when it came to free movement within the EU, “one good and one bad”.

The positive impact for Romania was that its citizens working abroad across the world sent back €7bn in a good year, and between €3bn and €4bn during the economic crisis.

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But both he and the Polish ambassador, Arkady Rzegocki, said their governments had considered policies to stem the loss of skilled workers, including ideas around making graduates work for a number of years or pay back the cost of their courses.

“Of course we are worried about that,” said Rzegocki, who said there were 1 million Poles living in the UK, with the vast majority in employment or studying.

“We hope that they will start to be coming back. I hope that the situation will improve because we’ve had a huge economic success … our GDP is growing every year.”

Romanian ambassador defends country’s contribution to NHS

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