The healthcare sector is transforming at an unprecedented pace in terms of technological advances and scientific research owing to the digital revolution and the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. With a growing demand for healthcare workers, the opportunities for the Indian workforce in the global healthcare sector are immense. Skilling and sending Indian healthcare & Medical workers abroad are a way of boosting employment. Sharing his views in this regard, Alejandro Coca, Head of Business at Trueprofile.io interacts with BioSpectrum Jobs in detail.
What career opportunities are in store for Indian medical students globally?
There is a wide range of career opportunities for medical professionals and healthcare workers, including doctors, laboratory technicians, nurses, pharmacists, and support staff, all of whom are essential in ensuring timely delivery and care for the masses. When faced with a worldwide pandemic, this vital workforce forms the backbone of our fight against the virus.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) data from 2017 reveals that there were 69,000 doctors and 56,000 nurses from India working in the UK, US, Canada, and Australia.
Indian medical staff are among the most sought-after healthcare professionals globally. With urgent requirements throughout the world, Indian medical staff can avail themselves of opportunities in countries with advanced healthcare facilities, including UAE, UK, Ireland, and Saudi Arabia.
Are there limited opportunities for healthcare professionals in India?
A recent working paper by George Mason University’s Mercatus Center highlighted that compared to the world average of 150 doctors per 100,000 people, India has only 86 doctors registered for practice. The actual number of doctors available for practice, as Basant Potnuru shows, is even lower: we probably have only around 64 doctors per 100,000 people, well below half the world average.
There is a need to create more doctors, nurses, hospitals and medical equipment stock not only necessary for our health, but also for the economic health of the country.
Are Indian medical students skilled enough for international job opportunities? If not, where do we lack?
Indian medical talent is one of the most sought after, globally. This is why several Indian doctors, healthcare practitioners and medical professionals secure jobs across various international locations. A career overseas helps the candidate develop cultural competence. It expands the chances of meeting new people and learning a new language. Furthermore, by interacting with patients and professionals from different cultures and religions, the candidate can learn new techniques and skills that might not be possible otherwise at the workplace. Many healthcare professionals have been able to gain experience in a different country and utilise this experience when they return to their home country.
How can we ensure better upskilling of Indian medical students in order to contribute to bioeconomy growth- for India & globally?
As with many other geographies, the Indian medical education system could use reforms to meet the unprecedented demand in the future. The focus should be on improving the curriculum to bring competency-based education. There is a need for revising curriculum to have more practical training, competency-based skill development and Industry academia collaboration to facilitate innovation.
The World Health Organisation predicts that by 2030 there will be a shortfall of more than 18 million health workers. Identifying the healthcare sector as a major employer, the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship announced that it would be supplying 300,000 healthcare workers to countries like Germany, the US, UK, Australia, Sweden, Japan, and Singapore by 2022.
These figures indicate that the requirement for healthcare workers will continue to grow in the coming years as countries look to strengthen their care delivery. With attractive salaries and the chance to work with leading professionals and modern amenities, the talent gap offers Indian healthcare workers an opportunity to establish their careers in fast-moving international markets.