Czech Republic Facing Shortage of General Practitioners Due To Demographic Trends
38% of GPs in the Czech Republic are older than 60 years, meaning the country is facing a potential shortage of these key workers in the coming years. South Moravia is one of the worst-affected regions. Photo Credit: Freepik / Illustrative Photo.
Czech Rep., Sep 9 (BD) –The Czech Republic is beginning to experience a shortage of general practitioners. Already, 38% of general practitioners are older than 60 years, and demographic trends indicate that the problem will get worse still.
A round-table meeting of professionals was held in the Frýdlant Lounge of the Czech Senate on Monday to discuss the issue. Senator Roman Kraus, Chairman of the Senate Health Committee, said the Senators wished to express their concerns over the declining number of general practitioners’ surgeries in the Czech Republic, which could soon be destabilizing for the Czech healthcare system, removing a basic element of Czech medicine.
The aging of general practitioners is taking place in all regions, but the most affected are South Moravia, Ústí nad Labem, Plzeň, and South Bohemia. For example, in the Ústí Region, the average age of GPs in 2020 was 54.2 years, in the Plzeň Region, it was 53.9 years. The trend of GP retirement is a long-term problem, and data from the Czech Institute of Health Information and Statistics confirm a ten-year decrease in the number of surgeries for adults.
One of the problems of the Czech healthcare system is the relatively high number of outpatient specialists to GPs, which creates a certain imbalance in individual medical specialities. Medical faculties, therefore, have a role to play to ensure that general practice medicine becomes more in demand among students. Every year, Czech medical faculties produce approximately 50 male and 120 female GPs.