Health workers are the cornerstone of health systems, playing a central role in providing health services to the population and improving health outcomes. The demand and supply of health workers have increased over time in all OECD countries, with jobs in the health and social sector accounting for more than 10% of total employment now in several OECD countries. This publication reviews key trends and policy priorities on health workforce across OECD countries, with a particular focus on doctors and nurses given the preeminent role that they have traditionally played in health service delivery.
Le nombre de médecins et de personnels infirmiers atteint des niveaux record dans l’OCDE. Il serait désormais souhaitable que les pays réforment leurs stratégies de formation et d’emploi afin de mieux répondre à l’évolution des besoins de la population en matière de santé et de réduire le recours aux professionnels de santé de pays en développement formés à l’étranger.
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Following this medical degree, new medical graduates can apply to enter in four different types of post-graduate clinical training programmes that are of various length: general practice (lasting 3 years), more than 30 different medical or surgical specialties (lasting 4 to 6 years), public health specialty (lasting 2.5 to years), or nursing home specialist (lasting 2 years).
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There are 37 faculties of medicine in Germany offering medical education, including a private university. Admission to medical studies remains highly competitive. In 2011, 37,400 students applied but only 9,432 students were admitted (roughly one out of four).
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There are two broad categories of nurses in the United States: licensed practical nurses (LPNs) or licensed vocational nurses (LVNs, and registered nurses (RNs). In addition, graduates from RN programs can pursue further education at the master’s (or doctorate) level to become Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs).
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In the Slovak Republic, students can access medical education after having completed high school and having passed a university entrance examination. Since 2003, Slovakian medical schools are under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport, which also determines the financial resources available to them.
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Entry to initial medical education in Australia can either occur directly following the completion of secondary school (entry to undergraduate medical education) or following the completion of a bachelor degree in any field (entry to graduate medical education). In 2014, 18 medical schools offered medical education programs in Australia.
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New medical graduates then pursue their clinical specialty training (internship/residency), with the length of the training varying depending on the specialty. Overall, to become a doctor in the US, on average, a student can expect 10 to 16 years of higher education and post-graduate training.
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In Italy, there are two main categories of nurses requiring a university bachelor’s degree: Registered Nurses (RN) and Registered Paediatric Nurses (RPN). Once a Registered Nurse or a RPN, nurses can pursue further education in the form of a Master’s or Doctoral degree, which is more oriented towards an academic career.
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Entry to medical education in Ireland can occur in two ways: students can access it directly from secondary school (in which case it takes them 5 to 6 years to complete the programme) or after receiving a first bachelor degree (in which case the programme can be completed in 4 years).