Perceptions of Migrant Doctors in New Zealand

An interesting report appeared in the NZMA in February 2006.

The study identified four key issues that afffected Overseas Trained Doctors (ODTs) in New Zealand:

“Work issues which included difficulty finding employment and difficulty integrating into their work role;

A bridging programme which improved the ability of OTDs to gain knowledge and experience of the New Zealand medical working environment;

Financial difficulties which were a major impediment to attaining registration and a career pathway in New Zealand; and

Bureaucratic barriers (including examinations and information availability), which were seen as necessary but unsympathetic processes in gaining registration.”

The full report may be viewed here, if you are considering migrating to New Zealand with a view to working in the healthcare sector you may wish to read it.

Recommendations made in the report include:

  • “Acknowledging the process of attaining registration and integrating into the medical workforce as one of joining a medical community;
  • Recognition of the differences in medical cultures that exist around the World and the difficulty OTDs may have in understanding and learning their adopted medical culture;
  • Creating a “one-stop-shop” to provide all relevant information about registration requirements, employment opportunities after registration, and further career options;
  • Ensuring the examination process is transparent in terms of pass rates, content, and methods of examining;
  • Maintaining an equivalent of the “bridging programme”;
  • Ensuring that work positions are available to OTDs and that these positions are commensurate with their experience;
  • Ensuring the transition into hospital medicine is carefully regulated and appropriate support is offered;
  • The informal communication networks that exist amongst OTDs are recognised and incorporated into an overall strategy aimed at successful integration into the workforce.”


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