HC Deb 19 March 1998 vol 308 c705W
Ms Drown

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will amend the European Specialist Medical Qualifications Order 1995, to permit experienced and qualified doctors with Irish specialist qualifications to gain access to the Specialist Register. [34942]

Mr. Milburn

Extending the transitional provisions in Article 12 of the European Specialist Medical Qualifications Order 1995 to doctors holding qualifications awarded in the Irish Republic would be difficult to justify as it would amount to discrimination against European Economic Area (EEA) nationals holding other EEA qualifications.

The effect of extending the transitional provisions in the Order to include all EEA qualifications would be to allow a large number of doctors holding EEA qualifications which do not meet the requirements of the European Commission Medical Directive (93/16/EEC) to gain access to specialist practice in the United Kingdom. This would represent a significant inroad into the principles upon which the Order was drafted, and could potentially compromise the standard of clinical practice in the UK.