HEALTH PROMeTHEUS – Health Professional Mobility in the European Union Study

As labour markets become more interconnected, both globally and within the EU, health workforce policies at national level and the movement of professionals between countries are increasingly under the spotlight. The scale of professional mobility, the range of occupational cadres involved, the numbers seeking work in other sectors, and the potential impact on health systems as professionals move are all causes for concern. Making decisions on how to respond is difficult, however, given gaps in data, lack of knowledge of factors that reduce or facilitate movement, and evidence gaps on the effects on services, staff and financial and health outcomes beyond the anecdotal evidence. HEALTH PROMeTHEUS, funded through the 7th Framework Programme, contributed to this discussion by filling a substantial part of the knowledge gap on the magnitude and impact of health professionals moving to other countries.


The study sought to better understand existing patterns of professional mobility and the organizational, contextual and personal factors that push and pull health professionals across borders, to including the positive and negative impacts of mobility. The project also aimed to highlight feasible, effective policy interventions (national and international) and to identify effective managerial responses. In order to achieve these aims the study included quantitative as well qualitative data analyses and research on trends and policies which aimed to manage migration organizationally, nationally and internationally.

The results of the PROMeTHEUS project were:

EHMA’s role in the project

EHMA was responsible for the project management of HEALTH PROMeTHEUS and also delivered the work package ‘Testing the policy and managerial relevance’. The objective of this work package was to ensure that research and analysis throughout the project is fully informed by policymaking issues and practitioners’ concerns, and that it reflects a range of disciplines and national / regional level perspectives.

    The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n°223383. This page and the publications contained herein only reflects the author’s views. The European Union is not liable for any use that might be made of the information contained in this page and publications.

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