Shortage of medical teachers: How many are doctors?

Pablo Lara Muñoz, president of the National Conference of Deans of Faculties of Medicine.

Rejuvenate your templates Medicine teachers and having more doctors in them to combine their work in hospitals with teaching classes has become a matter of utmost urgency. A situation of generalized deficit of teachers that has put on the table the National Conference of Deans of Faculties of Medicine (Cndfm), which establishes that the average in each university is 76 people of which 38 are graduates in Medicine and 38 are not. A percentage of 50 percent.

This is the main conclusion of the rigorous analysis prepared by the entity chaired by Pablo Lara, and to which you have had access Medical Writing. It updates the information on the medical and non-medical teaching staff in the basic knowledge areas with teaching in the Medicine Degree. In the group of 28 universities studied and the 10 areas of knowledge evaluated, the teaching staff amounts to 2,131 people, of whom 1,064 have medical degrees and 1,067 are not.

Percentage of medical and non-medical teaching staff by area

Among medical and non-medical teachers in each area of ​​knowledge and teaching figures they perform, the results show that, in the case of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the number of teachers amounts to 274, of which 198 (72 percent) are not doctors and 76 (28 percent) are doctors.

This more than remarkable difference also occurs in Microbiology, in which only 37 percent of the teaching staff are doctors, compared to the remaining 63 percent. This means that, of 192 teachers, only 71 are physicians.

The proportion stabilizes in other areas of knowledge such as Physiology, with 441 teachers from the centers analyzed, of which 201 (46 percent) are doctors. In the case of Pharmacology, the percentage of doctors is 52 percent.

Areas with more medical than non-medical faculty

However, some fields of Medicine do have more medical than non-medical faculty. Anatomy leads this section, with 275 medical teachers, 72 percent of the total of 383 teachers. It is followed by Genetics, with 58 percent of medical faculty. Histology, with a total of 165 teachers, and Immunology, with 101, share the same percentage of medical presence in the classrooms: 57 percent.

Finally, the areas of knowledge in which medical teachers outperform non-medical teachers are History of science (54 percent) and Pharmacology (52 percent).

Proposals in the face of the decrease in medical teaching staff

In declarations to this newspaper, the deans of Medicine maintain that the medical teaching staff has decreased and that this recession is mainly grouped in the teaching staff of older age and shorter academic life. On the other side of the coin is the non-medical teaching staff, which has increased and, in a special way, in the figures of teaching staff doctor’s assistant and hired doctor, academic categories with which the academic career begins; it is a teaching staff with a younger age and a longer academic life.

Faced with this situation, the Confederation considers it necessary for non-medical teachers with a Bachelor of Medicine to have a proper medical training. As they develop, this training can be obtained in many different ways, in which the departments and universities themselves can participate very actively.

On the other hand, the deans advocate the adoption of measures that encourage physicians to become teachers in basic knowledge areas and, by extension, in clinical knowledge areas. In this regard, the following stand out:

  • Adequate assessment of obtaining the title of Specialized Health Training and of the healthcare activity carried out in the processes of accreditation of professors of the Degree in Medicine

  • Obtaining places of Assistant Doctor It is very complex for PhDs in Medicine for various reasons: they mostly opt for specialized training, accreditation and the competition are decided mainly on the merits of researchers (and they have to carry out a very demanding care activity in their dedication) and, in the case Once they obtained that position, they would stop working for the health system. “It is necessary to include new teaching figures such as the linked Doctor Assistant (which it seems that the LOSU will be able to contemplate) or support programs that facilitate their accreditation to specialists who work in the health system”, they explain.

  • Greater presence of medical associate professors in the basic areas.

  • It corresponds to the universities, at the proposal of the departments, define the requirements to access or, if it is the case, the teaching profiles or researchers with which the positions with teaching in the Degree in Medicine are summoned.

Although it may contain statements, data or notes from health institutions or professionals, the information contained in Medical Writing is edited and prepared by journalists. We recommend that the reader be consulted with any health-related question with a healthcare professional.

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