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Med Teach. 2007 Nov;29(9):893-6.

Medical migration and Africa: an unwanted legacy of educational change.

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Department of Primary Care, University of Liverpool, UK.


The opportunities given for medical staff to travel, work and remain in countries other than that of their domicile or graduation have led to the phenomenon of medical migration. This has been supported by ease of travel, improved technology and a drive to share good examples of medical education through improved communication. Whilst these opportunities create positive advantages to the individuals and countries involved, through the transfer of knowledge and medical management, the situation does not always lead to long term benefits, and clear disadvantages begin to emerge. The gulf between the developed and developing countries becomes pronounced, leading to a general drift of resources away from the areas where they are most needed and subsequent profound effects upon the indigenous population. This paper suggests that it is a responsibility of medical educators throughout the world to recognize this effect and create opportunities whereby the specialty of medical education positively effects medical migration to the benefit of the less fortunate areas of the world.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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