OET is designed to support Migrant Healthcare labour come to the UK

 by Sarah Pakshir

The impact of migration on the healthcare industry

There is a long tradition in the UK of recruiting migrant labour into the NHS to fill nursing vacancies. (Buchan, 1999)

There are more than 35000 overseas nurses, who have successfully registered since 2000 (Nursing and Midwifery Council, 2004). Overseas nurses make a valuable contribution to patient care and services, giving patients resources to improve their lives and disease outcomes.

Undoubtedly, these nurses improve patients’ health by training them emotional coping skills, when handling stressful situations. Moreover, not only do they promote healthy practices, but also share their skills and expertise whilst helping care home residents.

 OET and how it helps trained nurses improve their English skills

To help overseas-trained nurses work in the UK healthcare system, they need to apply for the OET.

OET is recognised as proof of English by healthcare regulators around the world. It helps healthcare professionals improve their English, so that they can achieve their ambitions and communicate more effectively with colleagues and patients.

OET focuses on improving language and skills, that helps professionals perform duties in English speaking healthcare industries. It uses real-world healthcare scenarios that stimulates healthcare environments and helps them feel more at ease.

The OET course can be used to aid overseas nurses move beyond basic English to become competent communications at work. It’s a course focusing on communication skills, needed to adapt, integrate and settle in faster. However, challenges do arise when nurses have to conduct general day-to-day conversations with patients, and personnel at the care home at a more social level. This is where OET plays a key role helping nurses continue learning and improves their English, consecutively leading to a positive

Why do healthcare professionals like OET?

Professionals with the skills required to write different types of letters including: referrals, admissions, discharges and transfers. OET speaking values clinical communication skills and helps develop real world skills, transferrable to the workplace for their profession. Moreover, it helps provide structure; build relationships, gather information, and give information.

Healthcare professionals like OET reading and listening as they are familiar with the health topics which narrows the focus easier to prepare for. Medical workplace texts cover procedures and protocols, medical charts; policy documents, and hospital guidelines. Preparing for OET listening helps trainees better understand colloquial and academic language as well as what colleagues and patients are saying.

I am Sarah Pakshir, OET Head Instructor. Since starting teaching over 20 years ago, I have helped hundreds of learners improve their English. I am specialised in teaching English for healthcare, and preparation for the occupational English language test. I am a British Council accredited Language trainer who seeks to support candidates during their preparation course despite challenging circumstances, and prepare them for the industry-specific tests.