Following is the speech by the Secretary for Food and Health, Professor Sophia Chan, at an information session at Monash University's Peninsula campus in Melbourne, Australia, today (September 17):
Good afternoon everyone. It gives me great pleasure to join you at this occasion.
With the concerted efforts of the Government and our healthcare professionals, Hong Kong has over the years established an efficient dual-tracked healthcare system of very high standard. Nonetheless, as in other developed economies, many challenges lie ahead of Hong Kong's healthcare system, amongst which, a fast ageing population and the exponential increase in the demand of public healthcare services are the most imminent ones.
The Government published the report of the Strategic Review on Healthcare Manpower Planning and Professional Development in June 2017, setting out 10 recommendations to lay the foundation for healthcare manpower planning and the direction for professional development and regulation of healthcare professionals, with a view to ensuring that there are qualified healthcare professionals to support the healthy and sustainable development of the healthcare system in Hong Kong.
As stated in the Strategic Review, there is a general shortage of doctors, dentists, dental hygienists, general nurses, occupational therapists (OTs), physiotherapists (PTs), medical laboratory technologists, optometrists and radiographers.
Hong Kong is now in general shortage of healthcare professionals and we welcome qualified healthcare professionals to join us. You will find there are abundant opportunities for treatment and training even for complex and rare medical cases. So this is mainly the reason why we are here - to promote and publicise the registration arrangements overseas to facilitate the practice of qualified non-locally trained healthcare professionals in Hong Kong.
Presently, there are avenues for non-locally trained healthcare professionals to practise in Hong Kong. For physiotherapists and occupational therapists, non-locally trained professionals could gain full registration without licensing examination through recognised qualifications in general.
Today, we are happy to have representatives from the Social Welfare Department and several NGOs to share with you more about the job opportunities for non-locally trained OTs and PTs in Hong Kong. You are promised plenty of development opportunities for a career in the healthcare arena in Hong Kong. I encourage you and your friends to seriously consider to start your career in Hong Kong.
I wish you all a fruitful evening. Thank you.
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