Why do medical students seek for work abroad?

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mr. Cagri Orkun Kilic, a medical student at the University of Marmara Faculty of Medicine in Istanbul, Turkey and Ms Aleksandra Likońska, a medical student at the University of Lodz, Poland . Both are also affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA). However, the opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writers and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

Article 13 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights states “Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state.” When healthcare workers move from one country to another to work, there are two factors to consider: Those called “push factors” which incites one to leave one’s country, and “pull factors” which can attract one to another country. Push and pull factors usually exist as opposite pairs such as low financial compensation in one country, and relatively high financial compensations in another country. Here we would like to elaborate the most common reasons why medical students leave their home country to work elsewhere.

Medical students voluntarily dedicate their youth and free time to explore art of healing human body and it seems rightful to demand equitable salary for their work, which includes personal, financial and moral responsibilities. In many countries salaries for young doctors neither ensure enough livelihood nor is the reflection of the workload and responsibility. Moreover, young doctors, who know that specialty is essential for their future career very often agree to lower payments or emigrate.

Graduation is not enough – in most countries to become an independent doctor specialty is required. Specialty course is a paid position at hospital and trainees are called residents. Residents learn by working, are gradually given more advanced procedures to perform, initially under supervision, later on their own. Average time of specialty course is 4-6 years.

In Europe there is noticeably alarming trend of increasing number of medical students, but without parallel increase of specialty places. Emigration is inevitable when students don’t have possibility to continue their medical career in country they trained in. This policy that originally put forward to solve the problem of lacking doctors, instead aggravated it. Poor quality of postgraduate studies is also a drive for leaving homeland. Specialty course should be a time of gradual transition from mostly theoretical knowledge gained at university to fully individual medical practice. Regrettably, very often this process is disturbed: lack of supervisors, work overload brings overwhelming duties such as additional shifts.

Humans seek to move out of a place where they feel insecure, as shown by the recent refugee situation in Europe. Economic and political instability and minority issues of a country are important pushing factors for medical students to seek new countries to settle and work. Disruptions in a country’s management and civil turmoil affect healthcare rapidly as deterioration of societal well-being leads to overuse of hospitals. Together with a sense of insecurity, political and economical instability is the recipe for medical student emigration.

WHO suggests that heavy workload is a reason for healthcare workers migration. Medicine is a non-stop profession as people will always suffer from health problems and require treatment. The need for doctors in medical facilities are 24/7 and shifts and working hours are decided by special labor contracts. Demand for doctors’ work is high and with some poor management of human resources, doctors face inhumane working hours even around Europe.

While the movement of medical students is a human right, on the other hand migration of doctors deepen the problem of lacking medical professionals in unprivileged areas. By understanding all factors behind doctors’ migration, IFMSA believes that solutions to such a complex problem may be found when worked together with governments, medical schools and other non-governmental organisations.

About the authors

Aleksandra Likońska is 5th year medical student at Medical University of Lodz, Poland, currently Standing Committee on Medical Education Regional Assistant for Europe 2016-17, International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA). Medical education enthusiast and researcher. Advocator for better medical universities’ curricula. Guide for medical students that want to be a change leaders in their countries. Member of Student Taskforce during An International Association For Medical Education AMEE Conference in Glasgow and Barcelona.

Cagri Orkun Kilic is a 6th year medical student at University of Marmara Faculty of Medicine in Istanbul, Turkey. He worked as National Officer of Medical Education for Turkish Medical Students Association (TurkMSIC) 2013-2014 and as Medical Education Director for European Medical Students Association (EMSA) 2015-2016. He also worked for two years as one of the coordinators of Student Taskforce during An International Association For Medical Education AMEE Conferences in 2016 and 2017.

 

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

TTIP wins Merkel’s endorsement ahead of 2016 tough deadline

The Commission sees ‘moderate recovery’ but prospects deteriorate

Why the ECB had to clarify it caters for the entire Eurozone not just Germany?

EU accused of being too nice with Gazprom in the infamous antitrust case

EU-US to miss 2015 deadline and even lose Germany’s support in TTIP’s darkest week yet

Is a full course lunch, a new Commissioner and 2 million anti-TTIP citizens what you would call a “Fresh Start”?

ECB readies itself for extraordinary monetary measures defying Germany

Austerity lovers to put a break on Renzi’s growth vision for Europe? the Sting reports live from World Economic Forum 2015 in Davos

More billions needed to help Eurozone recover; ECB sidesteps German objections about QE

One Day in Beijing

EU signs with Canada historic trade agreement, others to follow

GREXIT final wrap-up: nobody believed Aesop’s boy who cried wolf so many times

COP21 Breaking News: “There is an ecological debt that the world needs to pay back to Africa”, French President Francois Hollande promises 2 Billion euros by 2020 from Paris

Europe united in not supporting a US attack on Syria

Migration crisis: how big a security threat it is?

Does the world have strong enough institutions to handle risks like Trump and Brexit?

Commission’s feeble response to financial benchmarks fraud

Obama turns the G20 summit into warmongering platform

The Chinese spirit

Refugee crisis: Commission proposes a new plan urging EU countries to help Italy

Entrepreneurship’s key to success showcased by a serial young entrepreneur

On European immigration: Europe’s Missing Citizens

Does the Commission subsidise a forced labour scheme in Britain?

Doctors vs. Industry 4.0: who will win?

Is Data Privacy really safe seen through Commissioner’s PRISM?

European Business Summit 2014 : The Sting Report, Day II – Business, Politics and EBS 2015

ECB to support only banks not Peoples

Half of Eurozone in deflation expecting salvation from monetary measures

Quantitative easing: how Mario can tackle low inflation in Eurozone

France fails again the exams. Kindly requested to sit in on Commission’s class

Syria: Why did the US now take the Russian offer for a truce? What next?

Will Turkey abandon the refugee deal and risk losing a bonanza of money?

YO!FEST ENGAGES 8,000 YOUNG EUROPEANS IN FUTURE OF EU

Global Citizen-Volunteer Internships

Why the 33,000 staff European Commission did not have a real contingency plan for the refugee crisis?

Microsoft’s YouthSpark: a kiss of Life to European Youth from the European Parliament

The ASEAN Community sees the light: the genesis of a new powerful economic and political bloc and EU’s big opportunity

Is a deal over EU budget possible today?

EU: Turkey to shelter Syrian refugees and turn other immigrants back in return of €3 billion

The increasing drug prices in Europe

EU Commission: Once in every 20 beef meals you eat…horse probably with drugs in it

France and Poland to block David Cameron’s plans on immigration

The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page

WEF Davos 2016 LIVE: “Chinese economy has great potential, resilience and ample space for policy adjustment”, China’s Vice President Li Yuanchao reassures from Davos

Intel @ European Business Summit 2014: Better decisions now, the new business dashboard 

Me and China

GSMA Mobile 360: Connecting Cities, Connecting Lives, Connecting Europe

Banking Union: ECOFIN and Parliament ready to compromise

A very good morning in European markets

EU Commission challenges Berlin by proposing breakthrough legislation on banks

Advocate General ‘outlaws’ Data Retention Directive

Gloomy new statistics signify no end to Eurozone’s economic misery

Will Brexit shatter the EU or is it still too early to predict?

Why banks escape from competition rules but not pharmaceutical firms

Human rights in Brussels and in Beijing: a more balanced approach needed

The Americans are preparing for the next financial crisis

While EU Open Days 2013 discuss the 2020 strategy, Microsoft shares a glimpse of EU 2060

Paris agreed with Berlin over a loose and ineffective banking union

IMF’s Lagarde to Peoples of the world: You have to work more for the banks!

A few, or rather two, trade and economic alliances may rule our brave new world

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s