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Doctors fight for survival in Hungary

Medical students face a big dilemma upon graduating in Hungary - they can continue on interning and specializing in Hungary for so little salary that they might starve to death or move abroad and leave their beloved country behind.

Photo of Szilvia Varga
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The life of medical students is not easy in Hungary as I understood when talking to a friend of mine who is now finishing his last year of internship for becoming a surgeon. The dilemma he faces is all too well know in Hungary yet no one seem to do anything about it: medical students can continue on interning and specializing in Hungary upon their graduation but they will receive so little salary that they would pretty much starve to death. The options they have are to take on 2-3 jobs and work round to clock or move abroad and work in a foreign country for 10-20 times more money. Unfortunately the former is not sustainable as doctors also need to rest in order to be able to perform on their jobs as lives of others depend on them, so what my friend is now heavily considering is moving abroad although he loves the country, he has all his family there but the sad thing is that with a doctor's salary he will never be able to by an apartment and start a family. His dream is though to go abroad to earn enough money to be able to come back and live in Hungary.

( Here's a blog post on the same topic in WSJ)


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Hi Szilvia, interesting post! Any chance you could find an image to go along with it? Images help grab attention and tell a story with higher impact. We know occasionally people have issues uploading images so let us know if you face any problems. You should be able to use the 'Update entry' button on the right of your post and follow the instructions to add images from there. Looking forward to seeing more of your inspiring ideas on OpenIDEO.

Photo of Szilvia Varga

Thanks for the feedback, done ;)