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Who Needs Migrant Workers?Labour shortages, immigration, and public policy$
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Martin Ruhs and Bridget Anderson

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199580590

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199580590.001.0001

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Achieving a Self‐Sufficient Workforce? The Utilization of Migrant Labour in Healthcare

Achieving a Self‐Sufficient Workforce? The Utilization of Migrant Labour in Healthcare

(p.87) 4 Achieving a Self‐Sufficient Workforce? The Utilization of Migrant Labour in Healthcare
Who Needs Migrant Workers?

Stephen Bach

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the distinctive features of migration and labour shortages in the health sector, concentrating on medical and nursing staff. Mobility is strongly influenced by the regulatory frameworks of individual governments and remains politically sensitive. Employer demand in the sector is shaped by the dominance of the professions and employers do not have a preference for migrant labour, but use it to address skill shortages. Labour supply is regulated by government via training commissions and international recruitment has been an important mechanism to boost rapidly labour supply, increasing reliance on immigrant labour. Workforce planning has been poor and better monitoring of the emigration of health professionals would help develop a more well‐informed understanding of migration trends. The aggregate picture of no serious recruitment and retention problems disguises continuing difficulties that employers confront in recruiting and retaining staff in particular specialisms, grades, and locations.

Keywords:   nurse, doctor, shortage, migration, health sector, workforce planning

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