According to Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between Indonesia and Japanese governments, Japanese government plans to recruit Indonesian nurses and caregivers to fulfill the demand of those positions at the hospital and health centers. However, to be a qualified worker in Japan, one has to pass a national examination that is conducted by the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare for a license of a registered nurse within 3 or 4 years of working as a nurse or caregivers, respectively. Having considered that matter, a comparative study of the background of educational systems in Indonesia and Japan is discussed in this paper, with particular reference to the Diploma 3 nursing program.
There is no specific difference between Indonesian and Japanese nursing educational systems. However, current health condition of the countries remains as the focus of the curriculums where Indonesian nursing education is focusing on communicable disease and surgery nursing, whereas Japanese is focusing on gerontology and chronic disease nursing. In case of qualification method, Japanese nurses should undertake national board examination to be a qualified nurse. On the other hand, there is no national board examination for Indonesian nurses.
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There are few data on return migration of Indonesian nurses from Japan to Indonesia, especially in the context of bilateral agreement. Yet our study results point out that managing return migration needs a holistic approach. We discuss the motivation of ex-IJEPA nurses for coming home, their lived after return, intention to go back to Japan, and any other insights related to return migration.
The analysis showed that the decision for return was due to the expiration of the contract; therefore, they were fully aware that they must return to Indonesia. In the origin country, Indonesian nurses face challenges and difficulty for finding a new job and struggle with their current status. We propose that return migration should be managed in comprehensive approach. The role of sending and receiving country is an imperative to maximize the benefit of return and minimize the negative effects. Bilateral agreement or Indonesia Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (IJEPA) may become a good starting point in developing cooperative approach to manage the return migration.
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Indonesia is recognized as a nurse exporting country, with policies that encourage nursing professionals to
emigrate abroad. This includes the country’s adoption of international principles attempting to protect
Indonesian nurses that emigrate as well as the country’s own participation in a bilateral trade and
investment agreement, known as the Indonesia–Japan Economic Partnership Agreement that facilitates
Indonesian nurse migration to Japan. Despite the potential trade and employment benefits from sending
nurses abroad under the Indonesia–Japan Economic Partnership Agreement, Indonesia itself is sufferingfrom a crisis in nursing capacity and ensuring adequate healthcare access for its own populations. This represents a distinct challenge for Indonesia in appropriately balancing domestic health workforce needs, employment, and training opportunities for Indonesian nurses, and the need to acknowledge the rights of nurses to freely migrate abroad. Hence, this article reviews the complex operational and ethical issues associated with Indonesian health worker migration under the Indonesia–Japan Economic Partnership Agreement. It also introduces a policy proposal to improve performance of the Indonesia–Japan Economic Partnership Agreement and better align it with international principles focused on equitable health worker migration.
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