Residents' choice of a placement in periphery hospitals in Israel: The significance of personal/family and professional considerations

Paula Feder-Bubis, Gabi Bin-Nun, Dana Zarhin, Michael Sherf, Nitza Heiman-Neuman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Physician maldistribution affects remote and rural population health indicators and as such constitutes a major concern for health systems. Various countries, including Israel, have sought to remedy this problem, often by implementing more than one intervention simultaneously. In this paper, we explored the considerations that motivated Israeli residents to opt for a position in the periphery, as well as potential factors that could facilitate their retention in these underserved areas. We found that the motivation driving young physicians to specialize in a specific hospital includes personal- and family-oriented considerations (proximity to the nuclear family, perceived quality of life and lifestyle) as well as professional considerations (prior acquaintance with a hospital and a specific hospital department, department characteristics, availability of a residence position in a preferred specialty, prospective professional advancement). We therefore argue that the key to recruitment and retention of young physicians in remote areas lies in tailored interventions that take personal, professional and regional issues into account, preferably in consultation with the physicians themselves. The prominence of personal issues in the interviews with young physicians suggests that effective interventions should support a work-life balance. Hence success in attracting residents as a first step towards correcting physician maldistribution hinges upon coordinating policies in the medical field with policies in non-medical arenas - education, welfare, local authorities.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104795
JournalHealth Policy
StatePublished - Jun 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023


  • Israel
  • Physician maldistribution
  • Policy interventions
  • Practice placement
  • Recruitment of physicians
  • Retention of physicians

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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