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Trainee GPs earning over €80,000
[Posted: Wed 16/12/2009 by Niall Hunter, Editor www.irishhealth.com]
Doctors who have not yet become fully-qualified GPs are being paid over €80,000 a year while they are still in training, according to a new report.
Trainee GPs in the third and fourth years of their training, when they are based in GP practices, can earn up to €82,384 a year, including allowances totalling over €18,000, according to the report.
The trainees work in hospitals for the first two years of their four-year training programme at house officer level, often earning substantial amounts of overtime on their basic salaries of €41,200 to €58,400, according to the Competition Authority report.
For the third and fourth training years in GP practices, trainees' salaries are pegged to hospital registrar pay rates and continue to be paid by the HSE. With allowances, these pay rates can vary from €71,900 to €82,400.
The allowances given to their and fourth year GP trainees include a payment of €11,400 to compensate for the loss of overtime once the trainees move from hospital work into a GP practice.
Recently, the HSE has moved to cut overtime payments and allowances for junior hospital doctors
The Competition Authority report also shows that GPs in Ireland earn an average of €220,000 a year from treating medical card patients.
The report says that in private practice, the average GP fee in an urban area is now around €50 to €55, while in rural areas it is usually slightly lower.
Overall, a range of €45 to €60 in the price charged by GPs to private patients is typical, according to the report.
The report says doctors' fees including GP fees, have been rising almost three times as fast as the general level of inflation in the economy.
On GPs' medical card earnings, the Competition Authority says these make up a substantial part of their income.
The €220,000 per annum average annual earnings of medical card GPs, the report notes, includes payments received for patients treated by non-contracted GPs working within a medical card practice.
About a quarter of the money paid to medical card GPs are in the form of allowances for practice support services such as secretarial and nursing support, the report states.
The report says patients who have to pay the full cost of GP fees have a considerably lower number of GP visits than those who get free GP treatment under the medical card scheme or who may have their costs subsidised through private insurance plans.
Medical card patients have an average of 1.1 to 1.2 more GP visits per annum than non-medical card holders.
The report says the number of GPs who treat private patients only has fallen to just 4% of the total number.
See also "Call for more GPs to be trained"
|poolsupporter Posted: 16/12/2009 16:56|
No wonder so many foreign doctors want to work here...
This is an absolute disgrace that people in training are receiving what would be a well above average wage for many households.
iI am a social care student and have to pay fees without any chance of an income because my work is 'work experience' - any income i do get has to be from a part time job.
I don't blame the doctors but for gods sake close down this extortion ring and only leave it open to those who genuinely care for humanity.
The rates that doctors in this country can charge is way beyond the normal EU average and to be honest only serves to fill the pockets of too many inconsiderates who only care about themselves.
Isn't being in the medical or caring profession supposed to be a about that exactly?? caring and helping people to survive??
|badger5079 Posted: 20/07/2010 12:04|
I am a GP trainee. I am in training in the same way that the editor, Niall Hunter is in training for a more prominent and broad-ranging media job. We can refer to Niall Hunter as a trainee journalist, using the same logic and then we can inquire about his pay and ask if he is entitled to claim the salary he earns given that he is a mere trainee. After all, what's good for the goose....
A doctor's training should never be finished as there are new advances in medicine every year. Certainly all GP trainees are required to be fully qualified doctors before they begin the GP training course. The medical degree takes 6 years to complete in Ireland. This is analogous to the undergraduate years for such professions as social care studies and journalism and arts.
However, all fully qualified doctors continue to train so that they can become proficient in their chosen speciality whether that be general practice, oncology, surgery, Paediatrics or whatever. If social care workers and journalists and arts degree holders decide that they no longer need to train or be referred to as trainees, then good for them. Doctors have no alternative to continuing to train even though they already hold medical degrees. If doctors don't involve themselves in ongoing education, the consequences include patient harm and death. So ongoing training is not an option but a necessity for fully-qualified doctors.
The GP scheme in Ireland currently involves 2 years of hospital training and 2 years of GP apprenticeship.
Is it the contention of the question maker that doctors should endure a 6 year degree without pay, one year of mandatory internship at a rate of 32,000 per annum and then do a 4 year GP scheme for the same wage? That would be a total of 10 years after obtaining 570-600 points in the Leaving Cert in which those who chose to pursue medicine would earn less than the average industrial wage, similar to social care workers, less than most journalists.
When the brightest future doctors of Ireland use their brains and decide to emigrate and leave this country's healthcare system to be staffed by underachievers and penpushers, it is then that the moaning and gnashing of teeth will be at it's loudest and not even the most highly paid "trainee" Prime Minister in Europe will have a sticky plaster that can cover the mess.
|badger5079 Posted: 20/07/2010 12:44|
1. Foreign doctors want to work here because the lifestyle and pay is slightly better than Sudan, Pakistan, Egypt, Nigeria, Poland, India where most of them come from. So the bar was not too high for a job in the Irish health service to seem attractive.
2. You say that you don't blame the doctors but then you ask that the extortion ring that keeps doctors' fees high should be closed down. Who do you think sets the doctors fees and therby maintains the extortion ring if not the doctors? If you are going to accuse the doctors of extortion then why not come right out and say it instead of being mealy-mouthed? As for leaving the medical career open to only those who are caring...well...They are have brought in the HPAT which I understand involves testing for attitudes and professionalism and personality. This is taken in combination with leaving cert points to allow people to enter medicine wwith 550 points if they get a good HPAT score. The trouble is that people who fail the HPAT and repeat it the next year often pass the second time around despite the fact that there is no way to study for the exam as it is a personality and attitude test.
3. Do you not think that it would be a good idea, by your logic, to screen social care students to make sure that they aren't cold-hearted autamatons who just want access to children and old people for their own unexplained purposes? I don't think that but if it's a requirement for doctors, then it should be a requirement for social care workers, surely?
|badger5079 Posted: 21/07/2010 11:52|
Trainee GPs earn between 35,000 and 50,000 per year in basic wages. The rest is overtime wages. Overtime is mandatory not optional. Most Irish doctors would prefer to have less overtime but when they are forced to work high numbers of hours, they earn high wages. If anyone else on the same basic wages did 80 hours per week instead of 40, they would also earn high wages due to overtime...and they wouldn't be doing a job which requires as much concentration or expertise as medicine either by and large. Why don't they do that then?
|Jazzy Jeff Posted: 24/03/2013 20:53|
In response to the foreign student reply, considering that the average foreign student incurs over 250,000 euros of debt in loans (not including the 7-15% interest accumulated over 4-6 years of medical school), I would say they deserve every penny. Imagine having that much debt after graduation, then trying to buy a house or support a family. It is not cheap to become a doctor in Ireland, so paying them well during their residencies will definitely help ease their burden of debt and keep them practicing here rather than skipping over to another country. That's my view anyways...
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