Oct 24, 2018 at 12:00am ET By Joanna Hughes

With countries all over the world facing a deficit of health care professionals, French president Emmanuel Macron has proposed new measures aimed at tackling the problem. Here’s a closer look at government plans to increase the number of doctors, along with how these plans fit into Macron’s plans for a more sustainable and efficient health care system, as recently reported by Medical Xpress.

Demand for Doctors

While France’s health care system is considered a world leader, it still faces many challenges, alike other countries. One particular area of concern is a shortfall of doctors, particularly in rural and poorer areas. The government has a short-term goal of adding 400 family doctors to work in these "medical deserts".

Furthermore, it will do away with student number quotas in medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy in 2020.

Toward Future-Ready Health Care System

In 2000, France earned top honors in a World Health Organization report comparing healthcare systems. So why fix what isn’t broken? Macron insists his plans will keep the country at the forefront of global health care over the next half-century.

Other anticipated changes aimed at improving patient care include classifying hospitals into three priority categories: local health care, specialized care, and ultra-specialized care; mandating that doctors organize into 'communities' in order to respond better to patients in their own geographic areas; and better utilizing digital technology to ensure that patients have access to care regardless of their location.

"A lot of our neighbors envy the excellence of our health care system," said Macron. "My ambition is clear: I want what we call the health care system to be one of the pillars of the welfare state of the 21st century. A health care system that prevents and protects against today's and tomorrow's health risks."

Joanna worked in higher education administration for many years at a leading research institution before becoming a full-time freelance writer. She lives in the beautiful White Mountains region of New Hampshire with her family.

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