Increasingly U.S. health employers are again looking to international recruitment as an option to recruit experienced RNs and to recruit them in volume. International RN recruitment was a common practice in the early 2000’s until delays in visa processing times starting in 2007 followed by the great recession of 2008-09 saw many programs scaled back or canceled. However much has changed in the past 10 years. Today visa processing times have improved dramatically, international nurses can write the NCLEX licensure exam in locations around the world and the global, English speaking healthcare workforce is extremely mobile.
International recruitment can make a meaningful contribution to the quality of care and financial performance for organizations that are:
There are two approaches to international recruitment. The first is Direct Hire – Perm Placement, where hired nurses become full-time, permanent staff members of the facility that recruited them. Alternatively, international nurses can be contracted through staffing or travel nurse agencies, in essence, increasing spending on contingent staff.
The reality is that international recruitment is not going to solve short-term, urgent staffing needs. However, with no end in sight to a constant and increasing shortage, planning for medium to longer-term solutions is essential – and international recruitment can significantly contribute to those plans.