|Most students choose surgery, obstetrics or paediatrics.— File Photo
HCM CITY (VNS) — A workshop on how to attract students to family medicine was held at HCM City University of Medicine and Pharmacy yesterday.
Professor Nguyen Phuong Hoa, vice director of the Family Medicine Department at Ha Noi Medical University, said that family medicine was not attracting students for a number of reasons.
Most students choose surgery, obstetrics or paediatrics. This is because the course for family medicine is more academically rigorous than other specialisms but after graduating, entry-level jobs in health centres offer poor salaries and unsociable hours.
Hoa suggested family doctors should be encouraged with policies that offer them benefits and compensation, and the need and role of family doctors in communities should be advertised more widely.
Since 2012, Ha Noi has trialed family doctor clinics in Duc Tu, Co Nhue, Cau Dien Town, Tu Liem District communes, and the Dong Anh and Xanh Pon (Saint Paul) Hospital.
The survey showed that patients, who used the family doctor for health examinations, thought the system was a good improvement and experienced less health problems. There are plans to set up more family doctor practices by 2020 and they hope there will be around 80 family doctor clinics, in 7 provinces and cities by 2015.
Dr Tran Van Khanh, director of District 2 Hospital, said that there are currently three clinics in the city – in District 10, Binh Tan and District 2.
The clinics have earned trust among residents, and have helped over-loaded hospitals free-up beds. However, in order for these health-clinics to stay open, we need more staff trained in family medicine, Khanh said. — VNS