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What do doctors want? developing incentives for doctors to serve in Indonesia's rural and remote areas (Inglês)

Like many large countries, Indonesia has difficulty attracting doctors to service in rural and remote areas. To guide the creation of incentives for service in these areas, the authors analyze two sets of data about physicians: 1) the locations chosen by graduating medical students before and after a major change in the incentive system, and 2) survey data on choices among hypothetical assignments differing in compensation, career prospects, and amenities at various locations. Their findings suggest that: a) The current policy of offering specialist training is incentive enough to make doctors from Java willing to serve in remote areas. (It is not necessary to also offer a civil service appointment.) But providing specialist training as an incentive to work in remote areas is not only expensive, but potentially inefficient, since specialist practice and rural public health management require different skills and attitudes. b) Moderately (but not extremely) remote areas can be staffed using modest cash incentives. c) Doctors from the Outer Islands are far more willing to serve in remote areas than their counterparts from Java. So, it may be worthwhile increasing the representation of Outer Island students in medical schools (perhaps through scholarships and assistance in pre-university preparation).

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