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August 25, 2023 11:56 AM IST

India, Australia host a roundtable on “Enhancing health workforce training and skill pathways”

Australia | India healthcare workforce | healthcare sector | healthcare workers

In collaboration with the Australian Government, the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) hosted a roundtable on “Enhancing Health Workforce Training and Skill Pathways” on August 21, 2023, in New Delhi. The roundtable included in-depth presentations from India and Australia, discussing the growing need for healthcare and care workers in both countries. The discussions revolved around the possibility of these nations becoming preferred providers of skilled talent for the healthcare sector.

The event saw the participation of Mark Butler MP, Minister for Health and Aged Care, Government of Australia, alongside Atul Kumar Tiwari, Secretary, MSDE.

During the discussion, Atul Kumar Tiwari, Secretary, MSDE highlighted the situation of global shortage in Healthcare sector for qualified professionals and how India is ready is to address this issue with skilling in India. He also mentioned about PM Narendra Modi’s recent approval of setting up of 157 new nursing colleges in India.

In light of the heightened emphasis on fulfilling the worldwide demand for skilled labour, Secretary MSDE underscored the significance of tackling assessment costs as a primary concern. This pertains to Australia’s role in fast-tracking the process of citizenship for these Health Sector workers in Australia. To foster improved collaboration, he stressed the importance of establishing a scholarship program aimed at training and educating the Indian workforce in Australia.

The Secretary of MSDE underscored the importance of fostering this vital partnership by increasing cooperation in skill development. This cooperative effort would involve sharing of content, eliminating obstacles that impede international mobility, and simplifying the time and cost aspects related to skilled Indian professionals.

Australian Minister Mark Butler highlighted the existing shortage of healthcare experts in Australia and affirmed his commitment to surmounting obstacles in order to facilitate greater mobility for Indian healthcare professionals to Australia. While he commended the Secretary of MSDE for producing competent professionals in the healthcare sector.

The Australian Minister also expressed concern about the challenges Australia faced post the COVID-19 pandemic, and stressed on the need for healthcare sector readiness to address potential future situations akin to the pandemic. With this in consideration, he appealed to Secretary MSDE for an increased supply of skilled healthcare workforce to fulfil the demand within the Australian healthcare sector.

The roundtable session involved in-depth discussions about strategic approaches intended to transform ideas into actionable outcomes.These approaches encompassed cost-efficient testing model with expense reimbursement for international mobility, a dual language assessment approach, streamlined regulatory procedures for skill migration, a UK-Ireland-like approach to experience requirements, mapping of Job Roles with Australia for harmonization of skills, personalized courses tailored to the specific needs of the Australian healthcare market, recognition of qualifications held by the Indian workforce in Australia, a streamlined visa application process, cost reduction for assessments conducted by Australia, and the exploration of market-oriented incentives for recruitment agencies.

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