Physicians, Hospitals & Pharmacies
Statistics and facts on physicians, hospitals and pharmacies
Physicians and hospitals are cornerstones of every healthcare system. Expenditures on hospitals and physicians are subject to frequent and heated public discussions, making them an important issue for every health system and every health policy.
A physician, or doctor, is professionally engaged in prevention, diagnosis, treatment and post-treatment of diseases and injuries. The medical profession is one of the oldest in human history. Today, due to the variety of diseases and health conditions and their different treatment options, physicians are often experts in a certain specialty health area. The physicians’ density – the number of doctors per a certain group of the population - is always an important indicator for the availability of healthcare in a country. The quality of medical care can be observed on the basis of low prevalence and incidence rates as well as low death rates.
Hospitals are healthcare institutions, in which physicians, surgeons and nurses provide medical care - diagnosis, treatment and therapy - to patients. Hospital patients can be classified as outpatients when they do not stay overnight and as inpatients when they stay one night or longer. Hospitals are divided into “nonprofit” and “for profit” facilities. Most hospitals are nonprofit institutions, funded by the public sector or charitable organizations. Hospitals can also be of general and specialized types.
Pharmacies are the most important places for the distribution of medicines amongst patients. Pharmacists are responsible for compounding and dispensing as well as for the safe and efficient usage of pharmaceutical drugs. There are many types of pharmacies today such as community pharmacies, hospital pharmacies, ambulatory care pharmacies, clinical pharmacies, etc. For a decade and a half, internet pharmacies are demonstrating increasing popularity worldwide.