Reversing the Brain Drain Phenomenon

The subject of brain drain or professional intellectual loss from underdeveloped to developed countries remains a hot topic.This phenomenon is not unique to medicine and, in fact, encompasses many professional fields including other areas of science, humanities and professional sports.

To elaborate on the brain drain attributable to the medical profession, let me start by saying that many people choose to go into the medical field for various reasons. Most physicians have the gift of knowledge, forming the core of intellectual elites that elect to delay their gratifications from many years of educational torture that might eventually result in a comfortable life style.While many choose the profession to help others, some believe they do so because of the respect or prestige bestowed by the society at large. Others do so for money and yet others pursue the art of medicine because of their special gifts.

Whatever the reasons for choosing this noble profession, the fundamental act of practicing medicine must be supported by the right environment, offering adequate nurturing , security and diagnostic equipments to treat the sick and the injured. Any imbalance in this unique medical equilibrium will create an uncomfortable force that shifts the effort of the professional giver to look elsewhere and transport their expertise to a more favorable environment. Large scale migration of trained medical professionals whether from Nigeria, India or any other place seems to have the common denominators of poverty, lack of adequate medical infrastructures, poor security and inadequate allocation of health care funding. Thus the same brain that is been drained from one area can easily be filled elsewhere with the right environment. The transformation of acquired skill from a country with poor health structures is therefore not because of incompetent professionals or pure monetary seeking behavior, but rather because the new environment offers the right climate of innovation, improved experience, competency and well equipped facilities to entertain favorable and humane health care practices.

So what are the solutions? The developing world must learn to work hand in hand with established organizations to adopt and foster the very same standards that make health care great in those countries. At the fore front of the solutions to these standardizations is security. How can you cure the sick when you are afraid of been abducted or kidnapped? Other fundamentally important measures include the development of enough health care equipments and infrastructures, adequate funding for educational research and health care budgets with excellent salary and compensation benefits for practicing health care workers.

Until developing countries adopt and implement these measures, the health care for the indigenous will remain in perpetual backwardness with a sick health cradle that will continue to crawl and fail to rise up to the new age of world educational innovations.

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