To the Czech Health Ministry

7. December 2014

Conc: Postgraduate Training in Primary Paediatric Care in the Czech Republic

We are writing on behalf of the alarming news that has reached us from the Czech Republic concerning plans to reduce or even abandon postgraduate paediatric training and assessment in primary health care (PHC) settings.

 So far, training and assessment modalities for Czech trainees wanting to work in paediatric PHC, has been one of the leading models for many other European countries. Only recently, ECPCP has developed a curriculum for paediatric PHC on the basis of the Czech curriculum, which will now serve as a template for all European countries with paediatricians working in PHC.

We are convinced that appropriate health care delivery for children and adolescents starts at the training level. Quality of paediatric training is one of the most important factors in the domain of quality health care for children and adolescents.

The spectrum of presenting complaints and diseases in PHC nowadays differs considerably from that of diseases treated in hospitals and at university level. Doctors working in PHC and community medicine need to be additionally exposed and trained in a setting that deals with

  • First contact medicine
  • Preventive medicine
  • Immunizations
  • Care for children and adolescents with psycho-social problems
  • Longitudinal continuity of care for disabled and chronically ill children and   adolescents
  • Adolescent medicine

Health indicators for Czech children and adolescents have been very good in the past. This situation will most probably suffer an enormous loss if the efforts to reach this goal will be given up. In the future, follow up costs will be more expensive if doctors are not properly trained for their professional duties.

Dr. Gottfried Huss President