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Hungary's doctor shortage

The fact that newly graduated 1000 physicians faced 1200 doctors who left Hungary last year: a hundred of doctors a month leaving from Hungary to seek work elsewhere in the EU. The exodus assumed such proportions as if Hungary had no freshly graduated doctor. Real crisis in health care can occur, studies show.

16 February 2012

In Hungary already facing a doctor shortage, the migration has health-care professionals talking about a human resources crisis in the system.

In Hungary already facing a doctor shortage, the migration has health-care professionals talking about a human resources crisis in the system.


Low pay is the main factor, but poor prospects for professional development and promotion and substandard working conditions also play a part

Low pay is the main factor, but poor prospects for professional development and promotion and substandard working conditions also play a part.

A hundred of doctors a month leaving from Hungary, while less naturalisation of licensed medical doctor completed a year - shown in reference data from research by Péter Balázs, Professor of Semmelweis University. Almost a third of freshly graduates do not want to work in Hungary. In 2010 more medical practitioners died or became retired than the number of graduates who freshly gradauated and started to work. Between 2006 and 2010, number of Hungarian doctors were already reduced with 4000.

Rational fear

Conclusion of the professor's research, published in the Orvosi Hetilap (Medical Journal) that near-crisis situation and real crisis in health care is a rational fear in short term due to exodus.

Generally surgeon shortage is not considered but surgery would have already collapsed in Eastern Hungary, for example, if there were no immigrants surgeons. However, the willingness of foreign doctors to work in Hungary rapidly deteriorate. While 169 foreign medical doctor applied for naturalisation in 2006, but radically dropped as low as 35 of licensed docotrs in 2010.