WHO (2016) has published a report entitled “Working for health and growth: investing in the health workforce”. Report of the High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth. One of the ten recommendations to transform the health workforce for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) relates to international migration.
The recommendation is:
Advance international recognition of health workers’ qualifications to optimize skills use, increase the benefits from and reduce the negative effects of health worker migration, and safeguard migrants’ rights. (p. 12)The assignment involves researching data on the level of reliance of Australian on international migration for the health workforce, the reasons for these developments, and whether the current policies adequately address the negative effects of health worker migration.
The assignment, to be presented in report format, should address each of the following questions:
1. How reliant is Australia at present on international health worker immigration to meet workforce supply? This section should include presentation of data on the proportion of the clinical health workforce by category (medical practitioners, nurses and midwives, dentists, pharmacists, other allied health) who have initial qualifications from overseas countries. It should also report the current status on each category of the clinical health workforce in terms of shortage, balance or oversupply.
2. What are the current Australian government policies on international health worker immigration?
3. What are the reasons historically for this development within Australia?
4. Are the current policies sustainable?
5. What changes should the Australian government consider implementing to reduce the negative effects of health worker migration?
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