Segments in this Video

Doctor Shortage (01:26)


A dearth of medical staff threatens the health of an aging Western population.

Turning to Immigrants (02:43)

Globalization has created an international health market. France turns to Spain for a supply of nurses. A dental surgeon from the Ivory Coast blends modern technique and traditional rituals.

Malawi Doctor Shortage (03:07)

Most Malawian doctors leave to work abroad. An official talks about how the country is addressing the problem.

Malawi Agriculture (02:30)

Malawi's intense agricultural labor requires fitness. HIV kills prime age populations, forcing the old or very young into labor. Demographic trap produces a doctor shortage.

Nurses (02:13)

A doctor shortage forces Malawi to rely on nurses, who learn a wide variety of skills and sending patients to health centers for cases they cannot handle.

Health Centers (01:50)

There is insufficient manpower to run health centers in Malawi. A man talks about the country's health care difficulties.

Loss of Nurses (03:37)

Officials object to foreigners recruiting Malawi's nursing trainees away with better wages. They believe higher salaries in Malawi would keep doctors home.

South Africa (01:39)

South Africa is highly developed. We will examine whether they, unlike Malawi, can keep their doctors from leaving for Europe.

South African Nurses Recruited (02:43)

Cape Town's Groote Schuur hospital is one of the world's best, but other countries are recruiting South African nurses; the hospital in turn recruits from Malawi.

Motives for Leaving South Africa (02:09)

Nurses who have left South Africa criticize the working conditions in Cape Town, say they make more elsewhere, and worry that South Africa is deteriorating and will expel white people.

Violence (01:22)

In impoverished Soweto, the Baragwana public hospital takes in many victims of violence.

Black South Africans (03:56)

See the living conditions in poor, heavily black Langa, near Cape Town, South Africa. Many cannot afford health care and endure long waits at a public hospital.

Inadequate Health Care (01:54)

Some South African officials believe investing in basic health care rather than specialized training is the best way to serve the country's poor black population.

Cuban Doctors (01:57)

South Africa relies on Cuban doctors to serve its poor. One of these doctors says South Africa's poor often don't believe they need to see a doctor.

Cuba Exploits Doctors (01:27)

Castro's government sends doctors to South Africa; under its arrangement with South Africa, it gets a large cut of the doctors' salaries.

Appeal to Rich Countries (01:11)

A South African official calls on the Northern hemisphere to stop recruiting doctors away from South Africa and elsewhere.

Mali's Community Health Centers (02:54)

Images show subsistence-level life in Mali. Community health centers, managed by users, have helped increase life expectancy.

Community Center Practices (01:59)

Inhabitants of a community contribute to funding a community health center in Mali. A doctor talks about work he does there, and the versatility required.

Health Care on the Cheap (02:12)

A doctor at a Mali community health center talks about how the center gets by with few resources. Suddenly, a patient has an emergency and requires transportation to another facility.

Bush Medicine (01:56)

An official talks about how Mali has retained basic health care personnel despite the exodus of senior staff. Doctors talk about their dilemmas.

International Projects (04:26)

Malian researchers in an international project study malaria in Africa. An official discusses how such projects can get Malians who study abroad to bring knowledge and technology back to Mali.

Globalization and Health Systems (01:33)

Ancient coexists with modern in a globalizing world. We must make sure globalization does not deprive the poor of doctors.

Credits: Health Care Drain (00:44)

Credits: Health Care Drain

For additional digital leasing and purchase options contact a media consultant at 800-257-5126
(press option 3) or

Health Care Drain

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



The migration of inhabitants of southern hemisphere countries (commonly called "poor countries") toward the North ("rich countries) deprives these nations of their doctors and nurses. This one-way transfusion can be seen in movements from Malawi to South Africa and then on to Europe; leaving a vacuum in the poorest countries. In Mali, various peripheral economic systems enable certain doctors to stay in the country and treat their compatriots, helped by international funding- one surprising instance of globalization revealing a human face. (52 minutes)

Length: 52 minutes

Item#: BVL54925

ISBN: 978-0-81608-989-5

Copyright date: ©2003

Closed Captioned

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Only available in USA and Canada.