Research centre REACH

Return migration of nurses: A concept analysis

Indian Journal of Public Health Research & Development
Year : 2018, Volume : 9, Issue : 9
First page : ( 199) Last page : ( 203)
Print ISSN : 0976-0245. Online ISSN : 0976-5506.
Article DOI : 10.5958/0976-5506.2018.00994.4

Return migration of nurses: A concept analysis

Efendi Ferry1, Kurniati Anna2, Savage Eileen3, Nursalam Nursalam4, Yusuf Ah.5, Kusnanto Kusnanto5
1Lecturer, Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia

2Health planner specialist, Center for Planning and Management of Human Resources for Health, BPPSDMK, Ministry of Health, Indonesia

3Professor, School of Nursing, University College Cork, Ireland

4Professor Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia

5Lecturer, Faculty of Nursing, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, Indonesia

Online published on 25 September, 2018.



Return migration is a complex, challenging phenomenon and to date it remains a concept that is not well understood. A concept analysis would help to clarify what is meant by return migration. This paper aims to report on an analysis of the concept of return migration of nurses.


Concept analysis using the Walker and Avant approach.

Data Sources

Google Scholar, Pubmed, EBSCO, JSTOR and Web of Science databases were searched without a timeframe. Twenty-one articles meeting the inclusion criteria were included.


This study employs eight steps of Walker and Avant’s method to conduct the concept analysis.


Return migration of nurses can be defined by five attributes: the motivation and decisions of migrant nurse, return as human right, resource mobilisation, reintegration and return itineraries. Antecedents of return migration include the economic, social, geographical, political, family and life cycle that comprise the cause and effect framework. With regards to return migration, the consequences are beneficial or detrimental depend on the point of view migrant nurses, source country, receiving country, nursing profession and country health system. Empirical referents have been identified and support potential area to undertake a research on return migration.


This concept analysis has clarified current understandings and enhance the clarity of return migration concept. It recognises the centrality of return as a component in migration stage that needs a comprehensive approach.


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