Perspectives of family medicine in Central and Eastern Europe
of family medicine in Central and Eastern Europe. Family Practice 2008; 25: 113-118. Introduction. In the last decade of the 20th century, the countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) have experienced rapid changes in health policies. This process was largely supported by international grants. After this support has ended, it is important to keep up with the development, developing its own strategies and priorities. Aims and methods. The aim of the paper is to make a proposal for the
... posal for the future development of the discipline in CEE countries. The proposal is based on reports on an invitational conference that was organized for the key representatives of family medicine from CEE countries. For the purpose of this paper, additional information about the situation was gathered from literature reviews, country visits and personal interviews. Results. Information shows that although family medicine has been formally recognized and introduced in university curricula, there is a very big difference in its academic position. Postgraduate training has been established in all CEE countries, according to the European Directive. Quality measures such as the development and implementation of guidelines and the recertification procedure have also been formally introduced, but its quality varies. The key areas of concern are atomization of practices, unsatisfactory payment systems, lack of academic infrastructure and unsatisfactory continuous professional development. On the other hand, examples of good practice exist and need to be promoted. Conclusion. There is a need for continuous exchange of expertise within the countries. The paper will serve as a discussion paper for the next meeting of experts from CEE countries.