Family and community medicine, an undervalued specialty

María Fernández, former president of the Spanish Society of Family and Community Medicine (semFYC), has evaluated Health and her profession for the past 40 years. In addition, he sent his congratulations to EL MÉDICO magazine for its 40 years.

On the occasion of EL MÉDICO’s 40th anniversary, can you rate your profession over the past 40 years? What achievements have been made?

The balance of these 40 years of family and community medicine makes for a long talk, so I’ve probably left something out. Family and community medicine emerged back in the 1980s, and even then we had to fight hard to achieve Primary Care based on criteria of accessibility, length and comprehensiveness, in which a community approach to families was a fact. This idea slowly grew until it became a highly recognized profession outside our borders. This was despite the fact that we had to fight with some colleagues, not because they were inadequate in their training, but because we realized that MFyC through MIR was the most appropriate way to apply for such places. , which will facilitate a quality computer. .

As for SemFYC, what started as a seed company with 2,000 members has grown into a company with high international projection. It has established itself as the leading scientific society in the healthcare world, the benchmark for family medicine and PC, with 22,000 members. And it affects Family and Community Medicine itself, because we’ve been able to be present at the decisions of health departments, contributing to the doctors’ point of view. And the recognition of the profession as the only way to carry out special training in general medicine in our country, which has been mandatory since January 1995 in the entire European Union.

The medical specialist title at MFyC is recognized and the specialized training program through the MIR is the only training path that allows you to practice in the National Public System in Spain. Furthermore, in 2002 the program was extended from three to four years through MIR.

However, in the last ten years, despite the struggles and insistence of family doctors and pediatricians, through the AP Forum, we have seen how it was put on the table after COVID-19 that this reality we expected was now in practice. it is impossible to save. FCM is becoming a profession that is undervalued and unwanted by medical students.

Currently, it is difficult to carry out continuous training, participate in congresses. there are no replacements, we don’t have adequate quotas to train our residents…

It is important that the relevance and importance of MF is recognized from the university, so we need to start teaching our students what it means to be a family doctor with a more general view of Medicine. And for this, chairs should be created in Spanish universities. Although it is not in practice in any of them, it exists as an area of ​​training, but only in some cases, given by family doctors themselves.

In terms of achievements, it is noteworthy that as a society we have grown and expanded nationally, but also internationally, until we have become the leading scientific society in the health world and a benchmark in the field of MF and AP. In addition, we are increasingly present and referring to the administration of health, participating in the Congress, the Senate, the Reconstruction table during the epidemic, in which MF was heard through semFYC.

On the other hand, we, family physicians, have also begun to be a point of reference in chronicity in a world whose future will require greater attention to the elderly population, where there are many chronic patients, where the continuum of care and the hospital are interconnected. is a priority.

Another achievement of SemFYC has been the penetration of health centers and MF research. We are pioneers in European projects and also in scholarships that promote research at this first level, which we think is very appropriate.

On the other hand, we have certain values ​​that lead us to work independently of the pharmaceutical industry. And that independence is preserved in the content of our courses and in the training provided to all our partners. It does not mean that there are no relations with the industry. The opposite. we understand that the role of industry is very important in the health world, but always based on scientific evidence.

What has EL MÉDICO contributed to the health landscape?

The Doctor of Medicine accompanied us in the growth of the profession and helped to make that authority visible through its pages. On the other hand, in terms of being recognized as a society, this magazine has supported us, published our activities and participated in some training.

The media working in the field of health care have a lot to say to value the actions carried out by the professions, as well as to make them known to the workers of the health system.

Congratulations to EL MÉDICO Magazine!

I want to congratulate El MÉDICO magazine for the work it has done over the years and for appreciating the profession of family and community medicine, something that we still need to be more effective given the situation we find ourselves in. Also for the work done together with semFYC, transferring all the work we were doing.

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