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Indian Healthcare Worker Migration: Brain drain a cause of concern

The global/Indian Healthcare Worker migration, is one of the most widely studied issues in healthcare worldwide. Fueled by a global shortage of healthcare workers, this movement is considered a crisis in health sector human resources. We build a new database documenting the evolution of physician migration over a period of 25 years (1990–2014), and use it to empirically shed light on its determinants. In relative terms, the highest emigration rates are observed in small island nations and low-income countries, where needs-based deficits of healthcare workers are often estimated to be most severe.

The main factors contributing to the global shortage include issues around training, retention, increased demand for services, and an increasingly aging population. For example, professionals in the workforces of wealthy countries are retiring at higher rates than they are being replaced, and many countries are not training enough medical professionals to meet their own needs. Shortages of physicians and nurses are exacerbated by the increased need for general and long-term care, especially in industrialized nations. As people are living longer but not necessarily healthier lives, they need more sustained care

Immigration of Indian Healthcare Worker, it is strongly affected by the economic characteristics of origin and destination. The sensitivity to these push and pull factors is governed by linguistic and geographic ties between countries. Interestingly, we find that the evolution of medical brain drain is affected by immigration policies aimed at attracting high-skilled workers. In particular, physician migration is sensitive to visa restrictions, diploma recognition, points-based system, tax breaks towards migrants, and the option of obtaining a permanent resident status.

Work environment is dependent on and includes many factors such as funding, organizational culture and structure, safety of the workplace, and public context. The lack of medicine, supplies, and equipment, as well as adequate staffing levels, creates unsatisfactory working conditions and pushes medical workers into better sourced healthcare systems. Job dissatisfaction may also push healthcare workers away from the healthcare sector, exacerbating personnel shortages for those who remain.

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