Young doctor from Portugal visits Zierenberg group practice


"First of all, Dr. Rita Pombal abandoned the theory of many of her Portuguese fellows that Germans are cold and only interested in efficiency. „I have been welcomed very warm, the colleagues are friendly and helpful“ says the young doctor from Portugal.

Since last Monday she is doing a two-week internship based on the EC-exchange program „Hippokrates“ in the GP-group practice of Dr. Dirk Wetzel, Gisela Stahl and Christian Haase. She ist also enchanted by the landscape. „It is wonderful here, the nature and the mountains are so beautiful“, says the 28-year-old from Portugal’s second largest town, Porto.

So why did the young physician, that is graduating to be a general practitioner, come to Zierenberg? „ I want to see how a German practice works“ is her reply. Because she thinks of coming to Germany after graduating in about one year, also because her boyfriend is already working here as a web-designer for a Hamburg company. „And because the salaries are much higher here“ says the friendly young woman. And she chose Zierenberg because people here speak German without a dialect. She is studying German for about one year, speaks it quite well and understands even more. 

As for the differences between the health care systems, Dr. Pombal sees advantages and disadvantages in both systems. An advantage of the German system in her opinion is the easy access to specialist care. On the other hand this leads to a lot of unnecessary consultations. “The General Practitioner has an overview of the patient´s health problems, specialists often only concentrate on their specialty.” is her sharp-witted summary of the differences between the both systems. “The German system is good for sick people, but can harm the healthy ones.” Her colleagues do not disagree. “That´s precisely it. Many people in Germany consult specialists because of minor health problems, which is not always a good idea” assents Dr. Wetzel and uses to opportunity to make a bit of advertising for the profession of a general practitioner. “It is an amazing job” And that is also a reason why the practice is offering internships for young colleagues. “It is of utmost importance to us to support young GPs..”
Published on 7th of November 2014 - Article gently provided by José Pinto, Hessisch Niedersaechsische Allgmeine -HNA-
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