The number of physicians specialising in geriatric care

The Madrid Plan considers that information about the number and type of physicians with specialised training in geriatric care is important to help identify whether the health workforce is changing as the needs of the population change.

It takes many years to educate specialist medical practitioners and any gaps cannot always be filled by recruiting doctors from overseas.

Health Workforce New Zealand is part of the Ministry of Health. It has told us that it is working with the Medical Council of New Zealand to collect data about the number and type of physicians in the different specialties and sub-specialties.

The Medical Council keeps a register of doctors and holds high-level information about their vocational scope of practice. For example, it holds data about the number of specialists qualified to work in internal medicine - but not how many are geriatricians, which is a sub-specialty.