Send to

Choose Destination
Health Policy. 2017 Dec;121(12):1208-1214. doi: 10.1016/j.healthpol.2017.09.016. Epub 2017 Sep 28.

Migration intentions among Portuguese junior doctors: Results from a survey.

Author information

Medical Director Office, Hospital das Clínicas da Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São Paulo, University of São Paulo, Brazil; Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto, University of Porto, Portugal. Electronic address:
Faculty of Medicine of the University of Porto, University of Porto, Portugal.


Migration of health personnel during periods of economic crisis represents a challenge for policymakers in origin and destination countries. Portugal is going through a period of economic hardship and much has been speculated about an increase in junior doctors' migration during this period. Using a questionnaire administered to a sample of Portuguese junior doctors who were still in the general residency (1st-year after medical school), we aim at determining the prevalence of migration intentions among Portuguese junior doctors and to identify the most important drivers of career choice for those who are considering emigrating in the near future. In our sample, 55% of Portuguese junior doctors are considering working abroad in the coming 10 years. Several variables were associated with an intention to work abroad: female sex (odds ratio [OR] 0.559; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.488-0.640), the National Medical Exam score (OR 0.978; 95% CI 0.961-0.996;), having studied abroad (OR 1.756; 95% CI 1.086-2.867) and considering income and research opportunities as key factors for future specialty choice (OR 1.356; 95% CI 1.132-1.626; OR 2.626; 95% CI 1.228-4.172). Our study warns of the shortages the country may face due to doctors' migration and the main factors behind migration intentions in Portugal. Developing physician retention strategies is a priority to appropriately address these factors.


Human resources; Migration intentions; Physicians; Portugal

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center