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Report: more doctors needed at health clinics

Published tisdag 12 januari 2016 kl 09.34
Report author: "you must invest more"
(1:12 min)
More doctors are needed at Sweden's local health clinics, a new report finds. Photo: Claudio Bresciani / TT.
More doctors are needed at Sweden's local health clinics, a new report finds. Photo: Claudio Bresciani / TT.

Sweden's county councils are placing too few doctors in primary health care facilities, according to a government-commissioned investigation into how resources in the health care sector can be better utilized.

The report finds that Sweden actually has more doctors working at hospitals than neighboring countries, but the nation lacks enough physicians at local offices and health centers.

Göran Stiernstedt, who led the investigation, tells Swedish Radio News that providing more doctors at clinics will pay dividends down the road by catching or treating diseases earlier and avoiding intensive, high-cost treatments at hospitals.

"Inasmuch as you have new resources, you must invest more in primary care and better integrate primary care and hospital care on a much larger scale than what's done today," he says.

In Sweden, 16 percent of people in the medical profession work at health clinics whereas the average for OECD countries is almost twice as high.

Overall the report, which will be made public this week, gave the Swedish health care system excellent marks but finds efficiency lags behind when compared to countries like Denmark and Norway.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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