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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

1
Kathryn Hoffmann, Department of General Practice, Center for Public Health, Medical University of Vienna, Kinderspitalgasse 15/1st floor, 1090 Vienna, Austria, kathryn.hoffmann@meduniwien.ac.at.

Abstract

AIM:

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.

METHODS:

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.

RESULTS:

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.

CONCLUSION:

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.

PMID:
26321030
PMCID:
PMC4576751
DOI:
10.3325/cmj.2015.56.366
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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