As the omicron variant spreads around the world, rich countries are stepping up efforts to recruit nurses from poorer areas, exacerbating labor shortages and inequalities in healthcare access globally, Reuters reports.
In response to a shortage of nurses amid rising cases of omicron, many Western countries have “increased international hiring as part of a trend that exacerbates inequalities in (services) health,” Howard Catton, the chief executive of the International Nurses Council, told Reuters.
“We’ve seen absolute increases in non-citizen hiring in places like the UK, Germany, Canada and the US,” Catton added in an interview with Reuters.
He explained that he was genuinely afraid that “this ‘quick fix’ is a bit like what we’ve seen with personal protective equipment and vaccines where rich countries have used their economic power to buy and stockpile, if they do so with force.” nursing work will only exacerbate injustice.
Some international workers come from sub-Saharan Africa, including Nigeria, and parts of the Caribbean, Catton said, adding that nurses are motivated by higher wages, better conditions than in their home countries and immigration status.
According to a Reuters report, Catton called for more efforts to strengthen the US workforce, saying there was a need for a “coordinated, collaborative and concerted global effort backed by serious investment, not just warm words, pleasantries and applause.” .” ” .
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