How to find steady employment within state healthcare as a specialist doctor?

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You are tired of short-term contracts and a lack of future prospects.

It is no secret that substantial numbers of highly skilled specialist doctors from struggling EU countries are leaving their home countries to find work elsewhere – and that many more are considering following in their footsteps. Already two years ago, the Italian newspaper La Repubblica reported that thousands of doctors had left Italy to seek opportunities abroad, citing “a dire mix of misfortunes in Italy: A lack of jobs, low salaries, insecure contracts and staff shortages.” Meanwhile, a feature by Fortune magazine described the severity of the crisis in Spain’s labour market as a system in which employers “have little motivation to bring on young people—or anyone, really—as permanent employees. (…) Almost one in four employed Spaniards are on temporary contracts, 10 points higher than the EU average and higher than every EU country but Poland.” The feature also pointed out that Spanish employers are discouraged from investing in training of staff due to short-term thinking.

Such developments as outlined above are reflected in the sentiments that Medicolink come across in our regular interviews with specialist doctors hoping to find a better future outside of their home countries. For instance, a couple of Greek rheumatologists told us that they dream of working in a well-organised public healthcare system and professional environment, whereas the reality in Greece is a health sector without a sense of organisation, leadership, or direction, and without the necessary means. Worse still, they did not have any faith that things would change for the better in Greece. Meanwhile, a Portuguese rheumatologist working in a state clinic explained to us that in addition to his daytime job he had to be employed at eight different private clinics during the week in order to make ends meet for himself and his family. And even then, he would only earn a similar total salary as that of a physician working in the public Danish health system in just one hospital for 37,5 hours a week.

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There is another way. The future can be different.

Where in the world is it possible to find an alternative to the aspects that seem to characterise many cases of employment in for instance Italian, Spanish, Greek and Portuguese healthcare systems, as exemplified above: Short-term contracts resulting in lack of job security, lack of pension, lack of paid vacation, and lack of sick leave? One such place is Denmark, where the public healthcare system is investing in co-operating with experienced recruitment companies like Medicolink to find the physicians that it needs for permanent positions. Such forward-thinking investment is one of the guarantees you have as a foreign jobseeker to Denmark that Danish employers have a genuine interest in your successful recruitment and long-term retention. However, that is not the only reason to consider a future in Denmark if you are a specialist doctor in want of steady employment with better conditions and stable prospects. Since 2009, the Danish healthcare sector has added more than 4,000 employees to its workforce. A workforce that benefits from an employment system rooted in the well-established Danish tradition of the collective agreement, ensuring employees a work-week of 37,5 hours and the right to 25 days of paid vacation, sick leave, and solid pension. As it says on the official Danish website for foreign jobseekers: “The Danish labour market is internationally known for its ‘flexicurity model’. A mix of the terms ‘flexibility’ and ‘security’, this concept refers to a welfare state model that combines a flexible labour market with social security for all workers.”

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How to make the future better.

The EU doctors in the examples described above have all found permanent employment in Denmark via the medical recruitment services of Medicolink. At Medicolink we strive to offer you a quality in service throughout the entire recruitment process. We know full well that a decision to move to another country is not to be taken lightly. That is why we offer our commitment not only to you as a candidate but to your family as well. Please do not hesitate to contact us to learn more about what we offer and to hear about potential open positions within your medical specialty.