My friend and fellow medblogger Peggy Polaneczky, MD had this to say after returning from a medical conference in Salzburg:
We had lots of conversations about healthcare in our respective countries. And all I can say is, despite all the issues we have in the United States, I wouldn’t want to be practicing medicine anywhere else but here. Not when I hear tale of docs whose only way of surviving financially is to take tips from patients who pay to squeeze into the surgical schedule ahead of the cue. Or of abdominal emergencies handled in hospitals that don’t have a CT scanner. And not a single fellow has a microscope in their office, forcing them to rely on gram stain only for management of vaginitis. (A poor substitute for an in office wet prep in my opinion.)
Most of these docs would give their eye teeth to spend some time learning medicine in the United Sates, be it something as simple as an observership or as complex as a second residency. Unfortunately, visa regulations in their countries and ours make this extremely difficult. But all of them will be offered observerships in Vienna and in Germany at the Institute’s expense.