“Psychiatrist is a profession of commitment, values, passion and yet little known”

Lhe Minister of Health and Prevention, Aurélien Rousseau, at the University of the Confederation of French Medical Unions, on October 6, called out students choosing plastic surgery at the expense of psychiatry. He was referring in particular to the fact that our specialty is among the last chosen in the national medical ranking tests. In 2023, out of 547 vacancies, the specialty left 67 vacant places, 67 opportunities to build a modern, humane care system adapted to today’s challenges. Everyone can and must choose their profession out of desire. Above all, we think that the problem comes from a deep misunderstanding of ours and its usefulness.

The numbers speak for themselves. One in five French people are affected by psychiatric disorders, and seven in ten people say they need to take care of their mental health, according to the CoviPrev survey carried out by Public Health France since 2020, often with difficulties in doing so. Overall, the prevalence of psychiatric disorders in the general population is massive: 1% of schizophrenic disorders, 1.5% of bipolar disorders, 10% of depressive disorders and as much anxiety, without forgetting neurodevelopmental disorders which affect more of 10% of the population, or even post-traumatic disorders and addictive pathologies. Each of us can be affected directly or indirectly. And the impact of psychiatric disorders on a family or professional community is often major and destabilizing. This shows how the profession of psychiatrist is a profession with a future.

Certainly, the difficulties of our health system are multiple and health is not doing well, especially mental health, as numerous articles, columns and reports have repeatedly echoed in recent years. Fifteen thousand psychiatrists are currently in practice, including 2,000 in child and adolescent psychiatry; but nearly 25% of them (3,600, according to the Directorate of Research, Studies, Evaluation and Statistics) are over 65 years old, and many hospital positions remain unfilled with significant territorial disparities. . The challenges facing us are numerous and complex. However, we know that our specialty has the dynamics, the spirit of innovation and that its stakeholders have the qualities of commitment to meet these collective challenges.

The patient, the central actor in his care

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