May 13, 1974

Physician Migration

Author Affiliations

Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation La Jolla, Calif

JAMA. 1974;228(7):825. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230320013004

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To the Editor.—  In their article (227:538, 1974), Ronaghy et al allude to what may be the basic reason for the unidirectional migration of physicians from developing countries to the United States, yet they fail to recognize what I believe to be the dominant cause. I refer to the Westernization of the medical-educational systems in such countries.In developing countries, the major medical problems facing physicians differ greatly from those in well-developed countries. This difference is not reflected in the training of physicians or the organization of health care delivery. The urgent need is to achieve a better standard of family health care and to solve problems relating to nutrition and public health. Sophisticated refinement of diagnostic and therapeutic measures is but a vague goal in the unforeseeable future. What do medical schools in developing countries produce in response to this set of needs and problems? The authors give us