The NHS is having to rely on doctors from overseas because a lucrative new contract for British GPs has resulted in more than 90 per cent opting out of responsibility for their patients in the evenings and at weekends.
Despite doing less, their pay has soared by 50 per cent to an average of almost £108,000.
'Relying on doctors being flown in for a weekend shift is not a sustainable way to cover up ministers' mistakes.' Calling for a 'radical review' of out-of-hours care, Professor Steve Field, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, said: 'I am particularly worried about the use of doctors from Europe flying in to provide out-of-hours care and then flying back to their home countries to provide services there.
'It's not good for patients here or in their home countries.
Between 2008-9, it paid nine Polish and two German doctors a total of £267,000 for shifts in the UK.