EURES: Creating more opportunities for young doctors

19.02.2010

EURES Denmark and EURES Italy have established a successful and innovative partnership in order to open more doors for young Italian medical graduates. Denmark is currently facing a shortage of nurses and doctors, with approximately 150 to 200 medical professionals needed to staff Danish hospitals. In 2000, the United Kingdom's National Health Service (NHS) faced a similar shortage and launched an EU-wide recruitment process with the help of EURES Italy. This was the start of a fruitful partnership and today at least 15 medical professional are hired annually as a result of the cooperation.

After having heard about EURES Italy’s success in mobilising medical staff from Italy to the UK, Danish EURES Adviser Lewe Kuhn decided to contact Aurora Scalora from EURES Italy, to discuss the possibility of establishing a similar recruitment procedure between their countries.
The wheels were set in motion. Aurora called her contacts at the University of Pavia and the Italian Medical Chamber, and together they organised a series of events, including a conference for university graduates in the healthcare field, which was held in Pavia in September 2009. The conference’s primary objectives were to raise awareness about the lack of medical professionals in Denmark, as well as to provide general mobility information to Italian healthcare professionals who had an interest in going abroad. The conference was followed by a Job Fair, where doctors could submit their CVs and collect information on working in Denmark. To date, approximately 20 to 25 Italian doctors have applied to benefit from the Italian-Danish cooperation.

Since preliminary knowledge of Danish is not a requirement, all Italian medical professionals who are able to converse in English are welcome to apply. The benefits are numerous: they are provided with assistance when looking for housing, a six-month Danish language course, and even help in finding their partner suitable employment, including help in tailoring their CV to Danish requirements. Aurora is working to further improve the package by “adding an English course, and detailed introductory briefings on working in Denmark and overcoming cultural differences”.

In June 2010 another conference will take place to assist in the promotion of the cooperation between Italy and other Member States. The annual Healthcare Technology Assessment (HTA), to be held at the University of Pavia, will provide a forum for healthcare professionals from throughout Europe to meet and exchange knowledge. Coordinated by EURES Italy in Pavia, the conference will see participation by a number of countries, including Denmark, Bulgaria, Finland, Germany, and Hungary, with more to be confirmed. Experts from these countries will be present to provide legal and administrative advice regarding job mobility.

Angelo Ciocca of the Assessorato alle Attività Produttive, Lavoro e Formazione of the Pavia region, said of the cooperation: “It is an initiative that creates opportunities for our young professionals; it allows the continuation of formative training and helps graduates settle more easily into work.” The success of this initiative was also picked up by the Italian media, and now the EURES Denmark office receives a steady stream of CVs every day. EURES Denmark is responsible for screening and selecting CVs, and liaising between the particular region of Denmark and the applicant.

Out of the first set of applications, four Italian doctors have been invited to Denmark for the preliminary stage of the recruitment process, with all travel and accommodation arranged by the hosting Danish region. If all goes well, these Italian doctors will start their stay in Denmark within the next month.

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