According to data from the Central Statistics Office (KSH), Hungary last year had 39,132 practicing doctors, the highest number since such statistics were compiled in 1960, Magyar Hírlap reports.
Since the regime change in 1990, the two lowest numbers have been registered in 2000 and 2007, but since the 2007 low of 32,207 active doctors the increase was 22 percent.
Despite the overall improvement, the number of general practitioners has been continuously declining since a peak of 6,780 in 1998 and stood at just 6,173 last year. But, coupled with a decline in the country’s population, this means that on average a general practitioner was serving the same number of Hungarians – the number hovered between 1,512 and 1,769 from 1990 and was 1,584 last year.
Data from KSH published earlier this year showed, however, that of a total 65,320 doctors registered in Hungary, only 55.5 percent were active – with those not active either retired, working abroad or on maternity leave.
Regarding the number of doctors working abroad, the Ministry of Human capacities said that the number of Hungarian doctors seeking work abroad has been falling since 2010. In that year, 845 Hungarian doctors applied for permission to work abroad while in 2017 only 334 did. Of the Hungarian doctors seeking work abroad, 1,498 were in fact still active in Hungary, having either decided not to leave, having returned to Hungary or practicing both at home and abroad.