"Each year around 60 doctors leave for the UK, Australia, Canada and other nations in the developed world to complete a year's compulsory training, but only half of them actually return, exacerbating a growing crisis in health care services."
The study said Sri Lanka has the highest expatriation or migration rate of doctors and the third highest expatriation of nurses to OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries.
"The other high skilled category with high outflow is accountants," the study said.
Many Sri Lankan management accountants are seeking job opportunities in Australia, Africa, the Middle East, the UK and Canada.
"Out of the qualified chartered management accountants (CIMA), around half migrate to other countries."
Migration of skilled professionals from Sri Lanka increased because of the ethnic war which intensified in the early 1980s.But government forces defeated the Tamil Tiger separatists in May, ending the 30-year conflict, and raising hopes of an economic revival.
The government has said it is trying to attract Sri Lankan migrant professionals to either return or invest back in their country of birth to help with the recovery.
The IPS study said that because of the brain drain, in the health sector, there are only 800 specialist doctors in Sri Lanka to serve a population of 18 million.