Abstract

The invited essay by Alvarez, Zelmer and Leeb provides baseline information about Canada's healthcare workforce that invites comparison with similar efforts in the United States to collect and analyze workforce numbers, trends and issues. Beyond the basic comparisons, such work also provokes discussion and dialogue about the intersection of workforce data analysis and policy. Examples of the use of data in legislative and regulatory decisions in the United States in general, and California in particular, offer some insight into how workforce data can inform policy decisions and how such decisions can also be influenced by other factors. The possible local and global implications of such policy - making should be considered.