Internationally Educated Health Professionals: Workforce Integration and Retention
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It is essential that internationally educated healthcare professionals (IEHPs) residing in Canada re-enter and remain in their profession. To make the most of this important supply of healthcare professionals, it is vital to understand who IEHPs are, the challenges they face and how to facilitate their entry and integration into the workforce. In this article, after a summary of what is known of IEHPs who migrate to Canada, common problems of entry and integration into the workforce are discussed. Profession-specific challenges are considered, including how roles in certain professions vary globally and the importance of cultural and communication competencies. Resources to assist physicians and nurses are described and compared with those available for other professions. Finally, future possibilities and strategies for workforce integration are considered. Although the focus in this paper is on one province, the issues and strategies discussed are relevant to other provincial and international jurisdictions that are struggling with shortages and trying to capitalize on potential sources of workforce supply.
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