Mutually Beneficial Immigration is Key to Global Healthcare Sustainability


healthcare workforce
healthcare professional migration
healthcare sustainability

How to Cite

Mehta, R., & Chakravorty, I. (2023). Mutually Beneficial Immigration is Key to Global Healthcare Sustainability. The Physician, 8(2), 1-9.


It is estimated that this unequal world we live in, will need 80 million health workers to meet the demands of the global population by the end of the decade, double the number in 2013.1,2 The population distribution across the globe is skewed (Fig 1) with high densities in Africa, South Asia and South America which characteristically remains mismatched to their gross domestic product and net wealth, which is enjoyed by nations with the least population densities (Fig 2). Healthcare provision within geo-politically separated nation-states continues to be driven by local social, political and economic factors. Therefore, the adage of ‘no size fits all’ is applicable. No two countries have the same healthcare system, anywhere in the world, we know today. Yet the desire to achieve ‘Health for All’ should be universal.3 Implementation of the fundamental principle that health promotion and prevention must be prioritised before the resource intense diagnosis and management of maladies, is believed to be the only way to achieve any form of sustainability in healthcare provision.


Liu, J. X., Goryakin, Y., Maeda, A., Bruckner, T. & Scheffler, R. Global Health Workforce Labor Market Projections for 2030. Human Resources for Health 15, 11 (2017).

Brennan, K. 10 Numbers to Note. Project HOPE (2022).

WHO Council on the Economics of Health For All.

Cooper, A., Swartz, S. & Ramphalile, M. Youth of the Global South and Why They Are Worth Studying. in The Oxford Handbook of Global South Youth Studies (eds. Swartz, S., Cooper, A., Batan, C. M. & Kropff Causa, L.) 0 (Oxford University Press, 2021). doi:10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190930028.013.3.

5 reasons why immigrants do not take natives’ jobs.

Consulting, A. Geopolitical Forecast: Geopolitical Fault Lines, Fissures, Flashpoints, and Fractures. Passle (2020).

Geopolitical fault-line cities in the world of divided cities - ScienceDirect.

Castiglioni, A. A History of Medicine. (Routledge, 2019).

History of the Royal College of Physicians. RCP London (2015).

Our history.

Lichtveld, M. Y. & Cioffi, J. P. Public Health Workforce Development: Progress, Challenges, and Opportunities. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice 9, 443 (2003).

Bludau, H. Global Healthcare Worker Migration. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Anthropology (2021) doi:10.1093/acrefore/9780190854584.013.231.

Addressing the international migration of health workers.

YHCW2021 campaign: Facts on health and care workers.

Brennan, N. et al. Drivers and barriers of international migration of doctors to and from the United Kingdom: a scoping review. Human Resources for Health 21, 11 (2023).

Davda, L. S., Gallagher, J. E. & Radford, D. R. Migration motives and integration of international human resources of health in the United Kingdom: systematic review and meta-synthesis of qualitative studies using framework analysis. Human Resources for Health 16, 27 (2018).

Jalal, M., Bardhan, K. D., Sanders, D. & Illing, J. Overseas doctors of the NHS: migration, transition, challenges and towards resolution. Future Healthc J 6, 76–81 (2019).

Contribution of migrant doctors and nurses to tackling COVID-19 crisis in OECD countries. OECD

Consterdine, E. Hostile environment: the UK government’s draconian immigration policy explained. The Conversation

Chakravorty, I. et al. Bridging the Gap 2021- Summary Report: Sushruta Journal of Health Policy & Opinion 1–52 (2021) doi:10.38192/btg21.1.

Dignity at Work Standards for the Healthservice | Sushruta Journal of Health Policy & Opinion.

Survey of specialty and associate specialist (SAS) and locally employed (LE) doctors.

Checklist for locally employed doctors. The British Medical Association is the trade union and professional body for doctors in the UK.

Chakravorty, I. Charter for Locally Employed Doctors in the UK Health Service: Presented at National LED Conference. Sushruta Journal of Health Policy & Opinion 1–28 (2022) doi:10.38192/led.charter.22.1.

Pang, T., Lansang, M. A. & Haines, A. Brain drain and health professionals. BMJ 324, 499–500 (2002).

Scott, M. L., Whelan, A., Dewdney, J. & Zwi, A. B. “Brain drain” or ethical recruitment? The Medical Journal of Australia 180, 174–176 (2004).

Dodani, S. & LaPorte, R. E. Brain Drain from Developing Countries: How can Brain Drain be Converted into Wisdom Gain? J R Soc Med 98, 487–491 (2005).

Escallier, L. A. & Fullerton, J. T. Process and outcomes evaluation of retention strategies within a nursing workforce diversity project. J Nurs Educ 48, 488–494 (2009).

Negbenebor, N. A. & Garza, E. W. Black Lives Matter, but What About Our Health? Journal of the National Medical Association 110, 16–17 (2018).

Bozdağ, F. & Ergün, N. Psychological Resilience of Healthcare Professionals During COVID-19 Pandemic. Psychol Rep 0033294120965477 (2020) doi:10.1177/0033294120965477.

NHS England » NHS equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) improvement plan.

Equality, diversity and inclusion - targets, progress and priorities. 35.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Copyright (c) 2023 Array