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Main arrow Archive of previous Issues arrow ¹3 2014 (37) arrow Generational differences in social and professional groups of physicians as a factor of quality of medical care
Generational differences in social and professional groups of physicians as a factor of quality of medical care Print
Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Generational differences in social and professional groups of physicians as a factor of quality of medical care
L.E. Petrova

Ural State Pedagogical University, Yekaterinburg

Abstract. The aim is to analyze replacement of generations in social and professional groups of physicians in Russia from “the spirit of the age” prospective (K. Mannheim).

Methods. The author defines trends in composition of age groups based on official statistics, secondary analysis and results of the survey. The trends include insufficient inflow of young specialists (the share of physicians under 30 years adds up to 15%, over 55 years - 22%), and division of specialists by specialty (the older the physician, the lesser chances to work within an in-demand modern specialty).

Results. Statistical data for the Sverdlovsk region and the identified trends are complementary to the national surveys.

According to K. Mannheim, “the spirit of the age” (as manifested in the influence of external conditions, reflected in the trends of thinking, values, attitudes) is developed at a period of active socialization - at the young age of 15-25 years.

Only 15% of physicians are young people, whose professional formation took place at the end of the 1990s - 2000s i.e. the infancy of the market development in the post-Soviet Russia. The majority of physicians (63%) are representatives of the middle age group born in 1955-1979.

One-fifth of physicians are those who were born prewar, during the war and post-war, their spirit of the age was developed either during the Stalin era, or during the Khrushchev thaw.

Analysis of physicians’ self-reporting on values and challenges of their profession showed that older generations are more appreciative of altruistic and traditional components of their work. The younger the doctor, the more efficiently he or she converts their profession. Physicians of the older generation have high expectations from the society in general, that are manifested in patients’ behavior in particular.

The asymmetrical composition of generational groups in social and professional groups of physicians contradicts to modern trends in national healthcare development: older doctors can hardly internalize attitude towards commercialization and standardization.

At the same time, values of the middle age and older doctors meet expectations of the prevailing patients’ group of the municipal healthcare, who are older people as well. This fact indicates an institutional gap: requirements of medical organizations are poorly assimilated with due regard to values and structural barriers of their employees.

Keywords. Physician; quality of medical care; replacement of medical staff


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