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Shortage of doctors

"Dziennik Gazeta Prawna" will note that there is a rapid increase in the number of hospital wards suspended or liquidated due to lack of staff - doctors and nurses. In January-August 2022, more than twice as many wards disappeared as in all of 2019. The problem of a shortage of medics occurs every year, but according to the newspaper, the trend is clearly upward.

The daily conducted a survey in the provinces and received responses from 11. It shows that 71 branches have been suspended due to staff shortages in this six-month period alone, more than twice as many as in all of 2019, when such a fate befell 30 branches. "Taking other reasons into account, a total of 156 branches have already been suspended this year. In all of 2019, there were 100," - It was written.

Presenting the draft budget for 2023, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced that spending on health care will exceed 6 percent of GDP, or PLN 165 billion. In 2015, we spent 77 billion for this purpose. Prime Minister Morawicki said that more than double the increase can be found in doctors' salaries, salaries of nurses, diagnosticians, lab technicians, laboratory technicians, paramedics, medical equipment, modernization of our hospitals, availability of specialists, training of new doctors.

The problem is that what can be seen in the statistics is not felt by individual employees. There are still many who can't count on statutorily guaranteed raises, as hospitals are running out of money for this purpose. A conservative estimate puts the shortage at around 60,000 doctors, especially specialists. The worst shortages are in specialties unpopular with medical students - geriatrics, psychiatry (especially child psychiatry), surgery. There is a shortage of anesthesiologists and radiologists, as well as pathomorphologists. The situation is exacerbated by the rapidly increasing emigration of doctors and the lack of new staff among nurses.

The government is supporting the establishment of new faculties training doctors, aiming to increase the number of students. Even in centers without the required teaching facilities, which will have an impact on the lower quality of the cadres trained in these places. A major barrier is the unavailability of a large number of places for young doctors in specialties. Either way, it will take at least 10 years for the results, as studies alone are only a prelude to training specialists.   

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