V4 Health Ministries Discuss Lack of Personnel

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Health Minister Andrea Kalavska (photo by TASR)

High Tatras, October 23 (TASR) – Slovak Health Minister Andrea Kalavska (a Smer-SD nominee) has met representatives of health ministries of the Visegrad Four (V4) countries (Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary) at a two day summit in the High Tatra mountains (Presov region) in order to discuss current issues in the health-care sector, including staff shortages and drugs policy, TASR learnt from Health Ministry spokesperson Zuzana Eliasova.

Like Slovakia, the remaining three V4 countries are also struggling with a lack of personnel in their health-care sectors. Kalavska at the summit, which took place as part of Slovakia’s V4 Presidency, unveiled several measures aimed at stabilising the number of doctors and nurses in the country.

“We’re working on a number of systemic steps. A residency programme helps us to obtain doctors in the regions, with more than 80 GPs and paediatricians taking part in the programme this year. This academic year we’ve also increased the number of students admitted into medicine faculties, a measure that will be reflected in the system after a few years when they finish their studies. We’ve introduced motivational scholarships for nurses as well,” said Kalavska, adding that the ministry is also planning to introduce nursery schools at health-care facilities in order to improve working conditions for mothers working in the health-care sector.

According to the Slovak health minister, the meeting of the V4 health ministries has been helpful, as it’s enabled the representatives to exchange experiences and search for solutions to certain issues jointly.