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Healthcare employment scams are rising: here’s how to spot a false job advertisement



Primary Source Verification provider,® provides guidance to healthcare workers on how to stay protected against rising recruitment cons

Recruitment scams targeting healthcare professionals in need of work are rising all over the world. This is according to, a leading provider of Primary Source Verification (PSV) services, which is advising skilled healthcare workers to stay vigilant and provides insight on how to ensure you’re not falling victim to such scams.

Just last month, it was reported that hundreds of nurses were stranded in the UAE after they’d fallen victim to false job offers posted by recruitment agencies in India[1]. The nurses were told of well-paid jobs and perks, but were not informed of the licensing requirements required in the region so were unable to actually start those jobs once they’d moved countries.

Similarly, in the US, a nurse reported receiving a phone call from a fake member of the state’s nursing board[2]. She was told that her license had been suspended, and she needed to pay to have it reinstated. It’s been reported that the scammer tried to extort $17,500 from the nurse.

Alejandro Coca, co-head of says, “While both of these scams are wildly different to one another, and on opposite sides of the world, we’re seeing an increase in this type of activity. Unfortunately, all over the world unemployment rates are high as a result of the pandemic and as with any situation which causes people to become vulnerable, there will be others who try to take advantage of them.’’

“Unemployment rates in healthcare are currently high all over the world, including the UK, but are particularly remaining high in countries which sadly don’t have as strong of a vaccine rollout programme in place compared to others. This does mean that those in these countries are also increasingly falling victim to scams.”

Any healthcare worker who is either currently out of work, or keen to change roles should therefore ensure they’re extremely vigilant in their searches so that they don’t become vulnerable to scams that prey on job seekers.

With this in mind, Alejandro explains how job seekers can better protect themselves: “You should ensure that you’re always working with a legitimate and reputable organisation or recruitment firm. Read reviews of this company and question them on their experience and expertise in the field. In the case of the Indian nurses who found themselves stranded in the UAE, this was because of a licensing issue. You can therefore always double check what licenses or qualifications you need to work in different regions or in different roles and ask the company you’re working with about these. If they’re unable to provide you with this information, or ask for payment for their services, this will typically be a sign that there’s something not right.”

Alejandro concludes, “Healthcare workers all over the world have been the beating heart of societies over the past 18 months – they’ve put their lives on the line battling the Covid-19 crisis and it’s terribly sad to see these very people now being preyed on by criminals. As a result, I urge all healthcare workers to take huge care in recruitment processes of moving roles and work with organisations and individuals that place an emphasis on trust – building trust and instilling it.”

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