In order to support young people in their career aspirations and at the same time keep them in the region, Osterburg offers the rural doctor scholarship.
Creative ideas to combat a lack of doctors
In the countryside and small towns, where young people often move away, the proportion of older inhabitants is increasing. Resident doctors are also retiring and looking for successors for their patients. The towns in the Altmark have come up with a lot of ideas to maintain the level of medical care.
School leavers who want to become a doctor can only study outside the Altmark. After studying medicine, returning to the Altmark is certainly an option, and the demand for doctors is high here as well. The town of Osterburg has found a way to support young people in their career aspirations to be doctors and keep them in the region at the same time: the country doctor scholarship. This is aimed at high school leavers from Osterburg who want to study medicine and work as a doctor in Osterburg later on.
Osterburg has joined forces with the Kassenärztliche Vereinigung (Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians) for this. Medical students are financially supported for the duration of their regular studies, internships are arranged with local doctors and even further training to become a specialist is subsidised. In return, the prospective physicians undertake to return to Osterburg and work there after completing their training. The plan is actually working: The scholarship program has been running successfully for several years now, and there are more applicants than scholarships. For many young people, our Altmark is a home worth living in, which they like to return to – and with a little bit of support, this works too.
More about the "Perspektive Landarzt" (Country Doctor Prospect) project