Send to

Choose Destination
Croat Med J. 2015 Aug;56(4):366-74.

Stressed and overworked? A cross-sectional study of the working situation of urban and rural general practitioners in Austria in the framework of the QUALICOPC project.

Author information

Kathryn Hoffmann, Department of General Practice, Center for Public Health, Medical University of Vienna, Kinderspitalgasse 15/1st floor, 1090 Vienna, Austria,



To assess the workload of general practitioners (GPs) in Austria, with a focus on identifying the differences between GPs working in urban and rural areas.


Within the framework of the Quality and Costs of Primary Care in Europe (QUALICOPC) study, data were collected from a stratified sample of GPs using a standardized questionnaire between November 2011 and May 2012. Data analysis included descriptive statistics and regression analysis.


The analysis included data from 173 GPs. GPs in rural areas reported an average of 49.3 working hours per week, plus 23.7 on-call duties per 3 months and 26.2 out-of-office care services per week. Compared to GPs working in urban areas, even in the fully adjusted regression model, rural GPs had significantly more working hours (B 7.00; P=0.002) and on-call duties (B 18.91; P<0.001). 65.8% of all GPs perceived their level of stress as high and 84.6% felt they were required to do unnecessary administrative work.


Our findings show a high workload among Austrian GPs, particularly those working in rural areas. Since physicians show a diminishing interest to work as GPs, there is an imperative to improve this situation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for University of Zagreb School of Medicine Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center