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Title: Integration or discrimination: opportunities and barriers to appropriate paid employment for healthcare professional refugees in Finland
Author: Markkanen, Sanna Marika
ISNI:       0000 0001 3619 0414
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2007
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This thesis looks at the opportunities and barriers to appropriate employment for healthcare professional refugees in Finland. Moving beyond a simplistic dichotomy between employment and unemployment, this study seeks to identify the factors that , may inhibit, or potentially enhance, healthcare professional refugees' ability. to reestablish their careers in Finland. This research is built' on a notion that a strategy enabling more effective integration of healthcare professional refugees'skills into the Finnish workforcecould benefit both refugees and Finnish society. Previous research suggests that a profession is often the main axi~ of highly educated refugees' ,identity, and being forced to abandon one's profession thus means a loss of identity as well as a loss of income and social statils. Although paid labour market participation is now widely recognised as one of the main factors _,hat facilitate , successful resettlement and social integration, the requirements set by the Finnish authorities make formal recognition ofoverseas qualifications difficult to achieve. In the case of refugees, this problem is exacerbated by the 'victimisation' of refugees and integration practices that do not meet the needs of highly educated refugees. Approaching the topic'from a constructivist standpoint, this thesis focuses on healthcare professional refugees' personal accounts of their experiences. In addition to 13 interviews with healthcare professional refugees, 10 interviews were conducted with key respondents from relevant professional associations and the institutional sector. The findings suggest that healthcare professional refugees' skills remain largely underutilised. An examination of the effects of different inhibiting and enhancing factors on healthcare professional refugees' career prospects in Finland indicates that the positive effects ofthe enhancing factors are effectively outweighed by the inhibiting factors. While an established qualification recognition procedure makes it possible for refugee doctors to obtain official recognition for their overseas qualifications, the training that is intended to prepare them for the examinations is inadequate. _In the absence of a suitable qualification recognition-procedure, refugee nurses are commonly advised to forget their aspirations of returning to nursing, and encouraged to fe-educate themselves for the loweer)-paid pr~fession ofa healthcare assistant.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available