Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor) Jan 3 2020
Foreign-educated health professionals (FEHPs) in the United States are generally satisfied with their recruitment experience despite the persistence of certain unethical practices, the first major survey of the U.S. international nurse recruitment industry in more than a decade has found. While strides have been made in the realm of ethical international recruitment, there is still room for improvement.
Current estimates indicate that 8-15% of the U.S. nursing workforce is foreign educated, but those figures are projected to grow in the face of health worker shortages and increased demand as the Baby Boomer generation ages and retires out of the workforce.
The study, conducted by CGFNS International, Inc. and published in the American Journal of Nursing, found that 69% of FEHPs had a positive recruitment experience. But the findings also suggest lingering instances of mistreatment, as 30 respondents indicated that their recruiters exhibited dishonesty during the process. Moreover, while breach fees are part of the business models for recruiters who bear high upfront costs, they leave FEHPs vulnerable to coercion and exploitation.
This is a topic that all stakeholders must address in order to protect the rights of migrating health professionals and to ensure high-quality care delivery. We have to consider the impact of migration on the individual FEHP being recruited as well as on the countries they're leaving from and migrating to." Franklin A. Shaffer, EdD, RN, FAAN, FFNMRCSI, lead author, President and CEO of CGFNS International, Inc.
For the study, the researchers surveyed 8,894 FEHPs recruited to the U.S. between 2015-2017 who used VisaScreen ® -; a CGFNS service that establishes eligibility for employment-based visas -; with an 11% response rate, reflecting FEHPs from 56 countries. They also conducted detailed interviews with FEHPs and recruiters to illuminate the current state of the U.S. FEHP recruitment industry today. Related Stories
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