Swine flu could put heavy strain
Swine flu could put heavy strain on poor countries warns leading healthcare company
HCL plc, the UKs largest healthcare staffing company, warned today that a swine flu pandemic could put huge strain on an already squeezed global health workforce.
The company pointed to World Health Organisation figures estimating a shortfall of around four million in the global health workforce, which would be under increased pressure if vast numbers of people in poorer countries fall ill with the disease.
HCL Vice Chairman Kate Bleasdale said: "The global healthcare staffing market is already squeezed by a growing and ageing population and a relative lack of people entering healthcare professions. Poor countries like Mexico which are most vulnerable because they lack resources. A worldwide pandemic would therefore put pressure on an already overworked system.
At HCL we see this problem first hand because we work with the Governments of developing countries to train and support medical staff. In order to cope, Governments across the world should be prepared to mobilise large numbers of healthcare staff to go where they are most needed, at short notice.