Specialty, Occupational Plans and Expectations of Medical Students – the Role of Family Medicine
DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2016.0154-0160german translation / full article
Background: Demografic changes and shortage of family practitioners are two important challenges of the German health care system. Family medicine especially struggles with the problem of recruiting enough young doctors.
Methods: Specific analysis of the nationwide online survey “Berufsmonitoring Medizinstudenten 2014” (N = 11.462) with special focus on students who consider family medicine as future specialty. The study investigates possible factors influencing the career choices, as well as occupational expectations of medical students. Both descriptive and multivariate methods were used.
Results: About one fifth of the interviewed students utter a preference for family medicine as possible specialty. Sex, living in East Germany and the estimation that family medicine is particularly held in high esteem in the population, have a significant effect on the preference for family medicine. Good compatibility of family and career is especially important for about 98 percent of the medical students .
Conclusions: To attract more students to family medicine the core skills of family practitioners have to be made more explicit at an early stage of medical school. At the same time, it is important to improve the working conditions for future family practitioners in rural areas to counteract the shortage of physicians. Considering the growing number of women in medicine compatibility of family and occupation should also be strengthened.