The Health Ministry of Turkey has allowed appointment requests from retired doctors aged 65-72, NTV reported on Oct. 16.
The Ministry will collect applications until Oct. 18 from specialist physicians and dentists in a possible move to address the country’s shrinking doctor-per-capita ratio.
Turkey’s “doctor drain” is escalating, as Turkish doctors choose to practice abroad due to increasing workplace violence and worsening working conditions in recent years.
The Turkish Medical Association (TTB) reported that 2,285 doctors applied for the Certificate of Good Standing necessary for job applications abroad in the first half of 2023.
Turkey currently ranks last in Europe with its 218 doctors per 100,000 people ratio, according to the European Statistical Office (Eurostat).
Last year, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addressed doctors and said “Isn't it the state that educates doctors? I'm speaking frankly, if they're going, let them leave,” about an exodus of doctors leaving Turkey.
One week later, he changed his narrative and said Turkey owes and needs them.