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Recent Trends in International Migration of Doctors, Nurses and Medical Students

image of Recent Trends in International Migration of Doctors, Nurses and Medical Students

This report describes recent trends in the international migration of doctors and nurses in OECD countries. Over the past decade, the number of doctors and nurses has increased in many OECD countries, and foreign-born and foreign-trained doctors and nurses have contributed to a significant extent. New in-depth analysis of the internationalisation of medical education shows that in some countries (e.g. Israel, Norway, Sweden and the United States) a large and growing number of foreign-trained doctors are people born in these countries who obtained their first medical degree abroad before coming back. The report includes four case studies on the internationalisation of medical education in Europe (France, Ireland, Poland and Romania) as well as a case study on the integration of foreign-trained doctors in Canada.

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Romania: A growing international medical education hub

For international medical students, the attractiveness of Romanian medical schools has increased since the country’s accession to the European Union in 2007, as they offer diplomas with EU-wide recognition for relatively low tuition fees and living costs. At present, nearly all medical schools offer programmes in English and/or French, taking up around 30% of the total teaching capacity. The internationalisation of medical education in Romania has taken place in the absence of any formal national strategy. Rather, medical schools have developed their own strategies to attract international students as a way to generate additional income, to be able to recruit and retain academic staff and to develop their infrastructure. Although Romania has become increasingly attractive for international medical students, owing to poor working conditions and relatively low salaries, the country’s health system is not attractive as a workplace, and most international medical graduates leave after obtaining their first degree.

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