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The number of doctors and nurses is shrinking due to immigration, but visits to health centers have increased
Written by SOT.COM.AL 4 Dhjetor 2023
In 2022, the number of visits to the primary service as the first point of contact with the health service by the population, has increased by 1.0%, compared to the previous year.
But INSTAT reported that the number of nurses in this service has decreased by 0.7%, while the number of doctors compared to a year ago has decreased by 1.9%.
INSTAT reported that in the primary service last year there were only 1777 doctors, or 35 less than in 2021, while the number of nurses fell to 6792 or 50 less than in 2021.
The workforce in medicine, especially with the primary service, is shrinking due to emigration to Western countries, mainly Germany.
An in-depth study by experts Ilir Gëdeshi (Center for Economic and Social Studies), Russell King (Department of Geography, University of Sussex) and Amarildo Çeka (School of Population and Public Health, British Columbia) showed that in 2020, within the country there were a total of 4745 doctors, while abroad there were 1028 of them.
As can be seen, doctors who are employed abroad are as much as 22% of those in the country. The branch of medicine in the country is the most expensive in terms of costs and time required for education. The formation of a specialist doctor requires 6 years of general studies and specializations lasting up to four years.
Surveys of recent years show a great desire to emigrate among young people, but the phenomenon is high in the health fields, with the aim of leaving.
The latest official data show that the number of students in higher education has decreased by about 13% from 2019 to 2023, but there is an increase in the branches where you can find work in emigration.
This academic year, there are 22,834 students in the fields of study related to health, which constitute 18% of the total number of students. The number of students majoring in health is higher than the needs of the domestic market, but this trend heralds the trends of emigration of professionals in the future.
Sources from the Faculty of Nursing show that most students enroll in German language classes in their first year, with the aim of having the language skills to be employed in the German market when they have finished their studies.
The sharp increase in the emigration of doctors was after 2016 and is mainly related to the sudden increase in the flow of doctors to Germany.
This flow was facilitated by the "Western Balkans Regulation", introduced by the German government at the end of 2015, designed to attract doctors from the Balkan countries, recognize their degrees and provide easy access to vacancies in work and work permits. /Monitor