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Proposal Smer to solve the shortage of doctors took not only domestic doctors by surprise

The idea of obliging medical students to work for 10 years, otherwise the state will demand money from them for training is a brazenness comparable to the regime that existed during the Soviet Union. Unfortunately, this is not the first time I have heard such a point of view. Keeping them out by force is the worst decision, which can further frustrate young professionals and drive them abroad as students. Foreign doctors working in Slovakia, planning their arrival here or while only choose which country to go, never cease to be surprised. How can this be proposed by the ruling party in a civilized European state?

Obviously, the shortage of doctors is huge, and it needs to be addressed systematically, for example, by increasing the number of students in medical faculties and non-violent maintenance of them in Slovakia. And not just students. It is no secret that not only fresh graduates leave Slovakia, but also experienced doctors with many years of experience who are simply tired of the state of the Slovak health care system. What threat do we want to keep them here? Are we going to return such an offense as an unauthorized departure from the republic?

One of the solutions to the personnel situation in the health sector is not to threaten, but, on the contrary, to motivate local residents to stay and attract foreign doctors, or at least not to prevent their arrival, but no politician is going to say this out loud. At least until the election.

We can use good examples from practice

Falk created an excellent system for the arrival of foreign doctors, which provided quality training for doctors within a few months after their arrival. Rumors about this quickly spread abroad, and foreign doctors applied with interest. They received Slovak languages, as well as doctors who prepared them for professional exams, and all this cost, in my modest assessment, only hundreds or thousands of euros. Smer estimates the cost of studying one medical student in Slovakia at 55 thousand euros. For this money, at least 10-20 foreign doctors could be trained the way Falk did, and within a year they would be in the system. For example, it would be possible to create a training center where dozens to hundreds of specialists would be trained, which could be quickly delivered to where they are most lacking. But in Slovakia, we do not finance the training of foreign doctors, we are rather going to deprive money by setting the cost of participating in exams 5-10 times higher than in the Czech Republic, or come up with a way to make it as difficult as possible for them to pass the exam.

Exam in March 2020 at the Faculty of Jessenius in Martin

An additional exam for foreign doctors, without which it is impossible to recognize the qualification in Slovakia, is organized at 4 medical faculties, and there are significant differences in its composition. Therefore, it is very important to know where the exam will take place in order to prepare in the necessary way. Information about the 2020 exams was published a week before Christmas, namely 16.12 with the deadline for registration for the preparatory weekly course until 15.01.2020 and until 18.02.2020 it is necessary to register for the exam itself, which this year will be held a month earlier than last year, in March 2020. What kind of planning can we talk about here? I know families of doctors who, after learning about the preparatory courses in January, hurriedly abandoned all business and fled to apply and plan their stay there. Because who knows, maybe in these courses in a week they will be given the key to success.

It is clear to me that the problem needs to be solved among our own. But to not let those who would like to come, that is, foreign doctors, and even in conditions where the system is collapsing, is nonsense.

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