Albanian Health Minister Defends WHO Report Findings Over Low Number of Doctors

Health Minister Ogerta Manastirlui has denied the findings of the World Health Organisation regarding Albania’s low rate of doctors per 10,000 inhabitants.

The WHO noted that as of 2016, Albania had the lowest number of doctors per inhabitants in Europe and one of the lowest rates globally.

Manastirliu said that the low number of doctors was due to the Democratic Party, adding that for four years after 2013 when the Socialist Party took power, the country was unable to produce any specialist doctors. She said that since 2018, there are 309 more doctors in the system and that over 600 doctors and 2400 nurses have been employed.

In March, Exit reported that the German Federal Statistics Office released figures showing that there had been 2064 Albanian nurses immigrating to Germany between 2016 and 2018. The number of nurses going to work in the country increased by 1300% between 2016 and 2018.

Prime Minister Edi Rama said that during 2018-2019, 400 new doctors were hired and 2200 nurses.  He said there were 1500 nurses on the waiting list for work.

Then in July, German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported that in 2019, 765 Albanian doctors worked in Germany, 21% more than the previous year. 

These figures do not account for doctors going to work in other countries including France, Italy and Switzerland.