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Study: Foreign-trained physicians frustrated at lack of residency positions
Date:6/26/2014

In a paper published in the Journal of Risk Management and Healthcare Policy, Dr. Lofters said those statistics for IMGs in Canada and the United States are not specific to immigrants from low- and middle-income countries, so it's possible their numbers might be even lower.

Of the 462 people whose survey results were studied, Dr. Lofters said the top five reasons for choosing to emigrate were: socioeconomic or political situations in their home countries, better education for their children, concerns about where to raise children, quality of facilities and equipment and lack of opportunities for professional advancement. Those same responses were the top five reasons given for choosing to immigrate to Canada.

"When asked if they had any other comments they would like to share regarding their migration experience, a substantial number of respondents reported feeling that they were misinformed as to their actual chances of obtaining a residency position in Canada," Dr. Lofters said. "Because they were skilled workers and allowed to migrate to Canada, many reported assuming that they would be easily able to find employment in medicine and expressed anger that their assumption was incorrect."

She said many spoke of the shame they felt in taking what they viewed as "survival jobs," delivering pizzas or driving a cab instead of practicing medicine. Many said they regretted their decision to move to Canada.

"Our findings suggest that brain waste is pervasive for physicians who migrate to Ontario and that both brain drain and brain waste have no easy of quick solutions," Dr. Lofters said. "Restricting emigration and immigration for health care workers would be very difficult from an ethical and moral standpoint."

She said that where feasible, low- and middle-income countries should implement incentives to encourage their physicians and other health care workers to stay in their home countries, such as improved working condit
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Contact: Leslie Shepherd
shepherdl@smh.ca
416-864-6094
St. Michael's Hospital
Source:Eurekalert  

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