We spoke to Jijo Unni, a Director at ONT UK (Overseas Nurses Training UK), who migrated to the UK to pursue his nursing career back in 2002.
Here, he shares his experiences of moving to the UK for a new, exciting chapter in his professional life.
"In 2000, I completed my nursing qualification in India. After spending two years as a nurse in Mumbai, I realised that I felt limited by the opportunities available to me and so I considered what my other options might be. I secured an interview with private healthcare provider BUPA in the UK, and thankfully got the job. My parents were so excited for me; I couldn’t wait to start my new job in the UK. The reasons that I decided to look for jobs in the UK were for better career opportunities, financial stability, and I wanted to settle somewhere new with my family. I also wanted to live and work in a country where nurses and other healthcare professionals are respected and paid well.
"After two years of working in the UK, I completed a BSc in Acute Care at Anglia Ruskin University, and was then promoted to a Clinical Skills Nurse in the post-operative area in Colchester Hospital. There, I implemented news charts and forms to contribute to better patient experience; this resulted in me receiving a letter from the Chief Executive congratulating me for the work I had done for the department. I then had further promotions and became a Practice Educator for the Colchester Hospital oncology service. Now, I only work part-time, which helps me to keep up-to-date with clinical practice – the rest of the time I help assist my sister with overseas nurses’ training and recruitment through ONT UK.
"I really enjoy living and working in the UK because my jobs have been flexible and very rewarding. My belief is that a job in UK healthcare will never disappoint, as there are many opportunities that await you. I of course had a few challenges during the relocation process, which is to be expected due to the cultural changes between the two countries.
"My life in the UK is better than I could have imagined – it has been the right decision for my life. I would advise anyone who has a fire in their belly and is considering making the leap and relocating to the UK for their dream job... to just do it!"
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