CE: Original Research: The Recruitment Experience of Foreign-Educated Health Professionals to the United States

Am J Nurs. 2020 Jan;120(1):28-38. doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000652024.67027.f7.


Background: In 2007 AcademyHealth published a landmark report on the U.S.-based international nurse recruitment industry. This article provides an update to that report, describing the current state of recruitment of foreign-educated health professionals (FEHPs), in particular foreign-educated nurses (FENs), to the United States. Areas covered include the regulatory landscape, economic issues, recruitment industry changes, and current demographic and migration trends.

Purpose: To learn more, CGFNS International, Inc., formerly known as the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools, and its Alliance for Ethical International Recruitment Practices division conducted a study designed to elicit qualitative and quantitative data that would further illuminate the recruitment experience.

Methods: Researchers conducted a survey of FEHPs, recruited from those who used VisaScreen services between 2015 and 2017, designed to assess their recruitment experiences. They also conducted interviews with a smaller sample of FENs and recruiters to elicit greater detail.

Results: While there was evidence of progress relative to the ethical recruitment of FEHPs, issues such as high breach fees, inadequate orientation, and misalignment of expectations regarding work environment and location were also revealed.

Conclusion: Given that FEHP migration to the United States is likely to continue its upward trajectory, better strategies to implement market-wide practices that ensure the safe, orderly, and ethical recruitment of FEHPs are needed.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Curriculum*
  • Developing Countries
  • Education, Medical, Continuing / organization & administration*
  • Female
  • Foreign Professional Personnel / statistics & numerical data*
  • Foreign Professional Personnel / supply & distribution*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Personnel Selection / methods*
  • Personnel Selection / statistics & numerical data*
  • United States