1. Zolot, Joan PA


Nurses' dual role as migrants caring for other migrants.


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Approximately 258 million people, or 3.4% of the world's population, live outside their country of birth-and some of these are nurses, notes Franklin A. Shaffer, president and chief executive officer of the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) International, in a webinar titled "Global Nursing and Migration Landscape: Trends, Drivers and Outlook."


Developed nations have seen a 60% increase in the number of foreign-educated health care professionals since 2010. And, while there are 20.7 million nurses and midwives worldwide, a global shortage persists with an estimated 9 million more needed, primarily in Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean.


International migration has always existed, primarily as a means to find economic opportunity. Only 10% of international migrants (about 25 million people) are considered refugees who have fled their home countries to escape war, persecution, or violence. The number of international migrants is expected to increase in the coming years for several reasons, including global mobility, population growth, and climate change.


Among migrants, health care workers have "preferred status" owing to global demand for their skills. This is particularly the case with nurses. According to Shaffer, this enables foreign-educated nurses in host countries to "leverage their favorable public perception to shift the paradigm around migration debates." Migrant nurses in positions of providing health care to other migrants also serve as important sentinels against "modern slavery" practices such as sex trafficking or labor bondage to which migrants may be especially vulnerable.


The CGFNS International is a nongovernmental, nonprofit organization that assesses and validates the credentials of foreign-educated health care professionals, so they can live, study, and work in their country of choice. The organization also advocates for ethical recruitment practices by foreign employers to protect migrating health care professionals. For more information, see Zolot, PA