University of São Paulo: Survey shows where doctors trained at the USP School of Medicine work

With the objective of evaluating the professional insertion of former students of the Faculty of Medicine (FM) of USP in the job market and in the health system, a new article published in Revista Médica da USP analyzed the professional profile of undergraduates from 1999, 2000 , 2009 and 2010. In all, 602 physicians participated in the survey.

“We researched four groups formed at different times, that is, physicians exposed to the job market for more and less time”, says Alexandre Santos Schalch, a scientific initiation student at FM and author of the article. The publication was guided by professors Alicia Matijasevich and Mario Scheffer, both from the Department of Preventive Medicine.

After obtaining the information available for each individual, the doctors’ professional circumstances were divided between public bonds, such as in hospitals that serve the Unified Health System (SUS), primary health care in Basic Health Units (UBSs), teaching or research at a public university, and private links, such as in private hospitals, private offices or clinics, among others.

“In large foreign universities, there is an effort to understand and monitor their graduates, in order to produce data that can guide institutional decisions”, explains Alexandre Schalch. For the student, knowing the work of health professionals contributes to the improvement of educational institutions and to the planning of public policies in education and health.


Most of the FM graduates analyzed in the survey worked in both the public and private sectors (52.8%), while a minority (10.1%) had only public contracts. The remaining 37.1% had only private bonds.

Among physicians trained in 2009 and 2010, there was a lower frequency of individuals working exclusively in the private sector. Among those graduated in 1999 and 2000, there was a larger contingent of professionals working only in the public sector or with “dual practice” (public and private sectors).

In addition, the analysis of public links reveals that most are focused on hospital care. Thus, 85% of the individuals studied who work with this bond are inserted in public hospitals, while only 5.3% are in primary health care.

“In the classes we studied, there is, in fact, a low insertion in primary health care, which may be related to our wide exposure since graduation to the high complexity that is Hospital das Clínicas”, says Alexandre Schalch. On this point, he explains that the new National Curriculum Guidelines (DCNs) for Medicine are already moving towards changes, establishing greater workloads for primary care.

The article also points out that maintaining the ability to train specialists in fundamental areas, in addition to fostering vocations for primary care, essential to the health system, is a curricular and institutional challenge for several institutions, including FM. “It is important to say that the health system needs surgeons, clinicians and specialists for primary care, but it is not a problem for some institutions to have a greater vocation for one or another large area”, says Alexandre.

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