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

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

UNICEF delivers medical supplies to Gaza in wake of deadly protests

Eurozone: Uncertain future with unemployment ravaging the South

Ukraine-EU deal sees the light but there’s no defeat for Russia

High-flyers: China is on top of the world for skyscraper construction

Can the US-Iran rapprochement change the world?

Bram in Colombia

Sweden well ahead in digital transformation yet has more to do

Refugees now make up 1% of the world’s population

EU: Centralised economic governance and bank supervision may lead to new crisis

The hostilities in south and eastern Ukraine resume; where could they lead?

Draghi’s ‘quasi’ announcement of a new era of more and cheaper money

YO!Fest back in Strasbourg for the 2nd edition of the European Youth Event – 20-21 May 2016

The right approach to addressing overcapacity problem from a Chinese perspective

Commission goes less than mid-way on expensive euro

Fed, ECB take positions to face the next global financial crisis; the Brits uncovered

Why the euro may rise with the dollar even at lower interest rates

Eurozone at risk of home-made deflation and recession

German stock market is not affected by the Greek debt revolution while Athens is running out of time

It’s not your imagination, summers are getting hotter

Superbugs: MEPs advocate further measures to curb use of antimicrobials

TTIP wins first crucial EU test: MEPs give in to the trade agreement

Hostilities in Syria’s southwest, mean cuts in vital aid across Jordanian border: Senior UN official

Air quality: Commission takes action to protect citizens from air pollution

We’ll succeed together

Eurozone closer to a deflation – stagnation trap

This robot has soft hands. It could be the future of sustainable production

ILO warns of widespread insecurity in the global labour market

The European Youth raises their voices this week in Brussels at Yo!Fest 2015

UN chief applauds Bangladesh for ‘opening borders’ to Rohingya refugees in need

The European Sting Cookie Policy

‘Immense’ needs of migrants making perilous journey between Yemen and Horn of Africa prompts $45 million UN migration agency appeal

IMF’s Lagarde: Ukraine must fight corruption

‘Habitual residence’ rules deprive EU workers from social benefits

At Ministerial session, UN regional office in Beirut to focus on technology for sustainable development

Fostering intergenerational solidarity and cooperation through age-friendly environments: the right answer to Europe’s demographic challenge

Cameron postpones speech in Holland

Digital business is Europe’s best hope to get back to growth

Parmesan cheese on shelves in Italy (Copyright: European Union, 2014 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service / Photo: Daniela Giusti)

CETA at risk again: Italy says it won’t ratify EU-Canada trade deal over product protection fears

If we can build the International Space Station, ‘we can do anything’ – UN Champion for Space

CHINA UNLIMITED. PEOPLE UNLIMITED. RESTRICTIONS LIMITED

COP21 Paris agreement: a non legally-binding climate pact won’t stop effectively global warming while EU’s Cañete throws hardest part to next Commission

Politics needs to “Youth UP” in order the ensure the future of our democracies

Berlin wants to break South’s politico-economic standing

Migration: Commission steps up emergency assistance to Spain and Greece

Merkel refuses to consider the North-South schism of Eurozone

UN chief welcomes ‘first concrete step’ in normalizing Eritrea-Ethiopia relationship

A young person’s perspective on the Paris and Beirut attacks and aftermath

Eurozone in trouble after Nicosia’s ‘no’

The end of the 404? Why we need to repair the internet’s crumbling infrastructure

JADE Romania Celebrates the 4th Anniversary

Why growth is now a one way road for Eurozone

European Commissioner for Youth wants young people to be at heart of policy making

China and China-EU Relations in the New Era

Only the Americans are unhappy with the ceasefire agreement in eastern Ukraine

The Stray

China in my eyes

Charles Michel advocates a strong Europe that acts where it can add real value

UN warns of ‘deteriorating climate’ for human rights defenders in Guatemala

Shinzō Abe, on the right, and Jean-Claude Juncker at EU-Japan Summit in Tokyo last week. (Copyright: European Union, 2018 / Photo: Etienne Ansotte)

EU and Japan ratify first FTA ever to include Paris Climate Agreement provision

G20 LIVE: G20 Antalya Summit in Numbers, 15-16 November 2015

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 )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ 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 )

Connecting to %s