New figures from the Nuffield Trust show that people born outside the UK account for almost a quarter of all staff working in hospitals and a fifth of all health and social care staff in the UK.
The report criticises both the Conservative and Labour Party’s plans to end the free movement of people from the EU, warning this will worsen current staffing shortages in the NHS and social care.
Commenting on these figures, Liberal Democrat spokesperson, Dr Sarah Wollaston said:
"Half of the health and social care workforce who have joined in the last 10 years were born outside the UK. That's over two hundred thousand additional people looking after our loved ones and keeping us healthy.
"Both Labour and Conservatives are putting our NHS and the social care sector at risk through their commitment to Brexit.
“By introducing a nurse tax on NHS staff from the EU, Tory plans would put anti-immigrant ideology ahead of the health and safety of patients and the well-being of the country.
"Only the Liberal Democrats are fighting to stop Brexit, which will cause untold damage to our NHS. We will introduce an NHS recruitment strategy to tackle workforce shortages and invest £7 billion a year investment in health and social care."
The Tory and Labour proposals would affect health services in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales and the devolved administrations would be powerless to prevent them