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Globalisation spurs migration of healthcare workers from poor nations

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.a2841 (Published 04 December 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a2841
  1. John Zarocostas
  1. 1Geneva

    Globalisation has made it easier for rich nations to “pull in” skilled migrants such as healthcare workers from poor nations, says a report from the International Organization for Migration, which promotes humane and orderly migration. Such migrants include a large number from sub-Saharan Africa, the region with the greatest shortage of healthcare personnel, and the trend is unlikely to abate, the report says.

    “Their [rich countries’] ability to offer higher pay, better working conditions and greater opportunities in safer environments will continue to pull foreign health workers until supply exceeds demand,” says the report.

    It says that the search for employment is at the heart of most migration and concludes that pressures “are set to increase.”

    There are “more than 200 million international migrants in the world today, two and a half times the number in 1965,” it says, and most countries are now simultaneously countries of origin, transit, and destination.

    Nearly a quarter of foreign trained doctors in countries of …

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