For two years from 2007 to 2009, 1786 medical graduates from Pakistan took part in PLAB1 examinations and for the same period 899 doctors took PLAB2 test. But the number went up unprecedentedly for the following years. In 2010 and 2011, 2490 doctors sat PLAB1 Test and 1011 took PLAB2 Test for the same period. The number of Pakistan registered on the GMC data stood at 8,552 on 7th of August, 2012. Until 2006, around 70 per cent of the so-called “international medical graduates came from the Indian subcontinent, considered till then a traditional recruiting ground for NHS recruitment but the Labour government brought in new and stricter immigration rules to benefit doctors from the European Union (EU) countries. Till that time the greatest export of doctors was from India while Pakistan stood at around number 5. Large scale protests were held by the 25,000-strong British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (BAPIO) against the new government regulations which were brought in without any consultation and warning. However, the government was not budging. Eventually BAPIO challenged the government in the court of law. The case went up to the House of Lords where BAPIO had a victory for those who were already in the training posts, thus saving jobs of about 15,000 doctors. However there were about 10,000 doctors who were not in the job and had to return to their countries mostly to India and Pakistan.
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Why having so many women doctors is hurting the NHS: A provocative but powerful argument from a leading surgeon
For many years until the Sixties fewer than 10 per cent of British doctors were female. Then things changed. For the past four decades about 60 per cent of students selected for training in UK medical schools have been female. By 2017, for the first time, there will be more female than male doctors in the United Kingdom. This is understandable in academic terms because girls achieve slightly better A-level grades than boys. They also mature earlier and may present themselves more impressively to medical school selection committees at the age of 17. The effect is beginning to be seen. In 2012, a total of 252,553 doctors were registered with the General Medical Council. The male-to-female ratio was 57 to 43 per cent. However, in its annual report last year, the GMC documented the changes in the UK medical register between 2007 and 2012. The most significant change was that the number of female doctors under the age of 30 had increased by 18 per cent, while the number of males decreased by 1 per cent. Indeed, in this age group, 61 per cent of doctors are now women and 39 per cent men. In the age group 30 to 50 years, over the same period, the number of female doctors increased by 24 per cent compared with 2 per cent for males.