Health Workforce Policies in OECD Countries

Right Jobs, Right Skills, Right Places

image of Health Workforce Policies in OECD Countries

Health workers are the cornerstone of health systems, playing a central role in providing health services to the population and improving health outcomes. The demand and supply of health workers have increased over time in all OECD countries, with jobs in the health and social sector accounting for more than 10% of total employment now in several OECD countries. This publication reviews key trends and policy priorities on health workforce across OECD countries, with a particular focus on doctors and nurses given the preeminent role that they have traditionally played in health service delivery.



Analytical framework of health labour markets

This first chapter takes a broad look at how health labour markets function. It presents a general framework for analysing the range of factors affecting both the supply of, and demand for, health workers. The discussion starts by presenting a basic supply framework, and then adds other components on both the supply and demand side. In all OECD countries, the functioning of the labour market for doctors, nurses and other health professionals is characterised by strong government interventions, affecting both the supply and the demand sides. The main rationale put forward for these government interventions is also discussed.


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