Foreign-Educated Nurses: An Overview of Migration and Credentialing Issues

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Executive SummaryNearly 100,000 (3.7%) of the U.S. nursing workforce is comprised of foreign-trained nurses, a number that is expected to increase as institutions face greater shortages in the future.Ethical concerns over these recruitment practices are raised since many donor countries are facing similar workforce shortages.Counter arguments point to the benefit of U.S. earned income filtering back to the economy of donor countries, totaling $8 million for the Philippines alone.Issues of global nurse migration are being managed and addressed by three organizations: Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools, International Council of Nurses, and International Centre on Nurse Migration.The process for migration varies depending upon the country of origin, but always requires the verification of training credentials, validation of language and nursing competency, and the processing of a U.S. nursing license and work permit or visa.Beyond competency issues, several considerations require careful management to create successful integration into the care delivery team including orientation to cultural differences, workplace values, and support for individuals who live far from home.

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