An ATI doctor complains that his salary is barely enough. “I didn't think I would count the change in my bag to see if I could buy a coffee”

An intensive care specialist told on Facebook how he came to live from day to day and how hard it is to get a job in the health system.

The doctor says that he counted his change for a coffee PHOTO: Facebook Mirela Ciobănescu

Mirela Ciobănescu is a young specialist in intensive care and decided to speak her mind in a post on Facebook. Mirela complains that after six years of college and five years of residency, the salary she receives can barely make ends meet.

“If someone told me that I was going to be an ATI specialist and this would be my money 2 months after the specialty, with a passing grade in the specialty exam among the first 10% in the country, I wouldn't have believed it. It's not just my reality, but that of many of my colleagues.

– I didn't think I would count the change in my bag to see if I could buy a coffee on the way to the hospital.

I didn't think that I wouldn't have the opportunity to pay my participation fees to our national ATI congresses, given the fact that we want to be up-to-date and professional on a day-to-day basis.

– I didn't think that getting a specialist doctor's post in a public hospital is such a difficult process and no one can tell you how long it will take. So, even you don't know if the coming months will catch you still unemployed or employed with a work permit.

– I didn't believe and I wouldn't have believed if I hadn't lived in my own skin that without the specialist doctor's certificate I don't exist and I won't be allowed to perform guards in my name even as a 5th year resident, and in this way I will be left with unpaid installments at the bank.

– I didn't think that at the age of 30, after 6 years of college in which I received a scholarship and after 5 years of residency, with a specialized exam passed with a general average of 9.33, I would still be supported by my parents and I will receive a package from home, because the process of obtaining specialist papers, of obtaining an ATI specialist doctor position will take so long.

– I was naive to think that our European exam would be the hardest part – in fact, it was the only thing that depended on me, and therefore, the easiest.

As for the rest… it remains to be seen.

So, dear younger colleagues, maybe you can learn something from this and you will manage to change at least a part of things in your favor, as they should be.

It's hard to keep your focus on what you're doing, to work hard when you have nothing to put on the table.

I made this post out of a desire to show that not all doctors are scumbags as they are supposed to be. In fact, those at the beginning of the journey live from one day to the next in the hope of better times”, the young doctor wrote on Facebook.

The reactions of netizens were not slow to appear. Most of those who commented on the young woman's post agreed with her, some even saying that they were in the same situation.

“Interesting post! I am commenting from the position of someone who took the first residency in Bucharest in my generation in my specialty, but did not have the “chance” to stay in a University Center…, so I chose to go to the province instead of leaving from the country (now I'm sorry)… I mention that from time to time I also solve a case at the level of a university center, with a lot of stress and pressure, because the big university centers refuse some patients for various reasons, and when I say dear stess, I am referring first of all to the support of the intensive care anesthesia department. In the province there is a big deficit at this level… so frustrations are present everywhere”.

“Do young specialists have the right to unemployment benefits, until they have the right to work and especially until they have a place to work? That between graduation and residency, more precisely between September and February, the young graduate has no income. And nobody cares. If you don't have parents, what do you do? I worked as an English teacher at a kindergarten for about two months. I even received the proposal to be promoted if I stay there… of course for a salary that exceeded the salary of a medical intern (I caught the time when there was a year of internship before residency)”

“I understand the drama of the medical system and what is happening to you, Mirela, is clearly unfair. However, in such situations there are other jobs as honorable as the one you practice. Teachers, engineers (with qualifications little appreciated in Romania) who work on the minimum in the economy, after years of study in which they struggled in poverty. 57% of the labor force in Romania struggles with the minimum on the economy or in that area…”.

“Come on, it's not really that much to cry about. From how many ATI doctors I know, not one “dies of hunger”. Let's also have modesty, there are other social categories to complain”.