Designing medical internship to improve recruitment and retention of doctors in rural areas
Objective: To report on the effects of the early sign-up for medical internship.
Design: This study compares the choice of workplace after internship among physicians who signed up early with those candidates assigned to the raffle model of internship in the study area, and in a comparison area experiencing similar recruitment and retention problems.
Results: The proportion of interns who signed up early that still worked as physicians in the study area by April 2014 (29%) was twice as high as among the regular interns (15%) and interns in the comparison area (14%). Among the 59 interns who signed up early still working in the study area in April 2014, 33% had grown up in this area. However, the greatest benefits were for the most densely populated municipalities in the study area.
Conclusions: The early sign-up model had a net contribution of proving additional physicians in the study area.