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The government aims to guarantee that from next January general practitioners cannot be paid less than what is specified in the new pay scale for doctors approved by parliament this week, the head of the Prime Minister’s Office said. The details of the rules on how doctors are paid are still being finalised and consultations are ongoing between the government and the Hungarian Chamber of Doctors (MOK), Gergely Gulyás told a regular press conference. A resident doctor in practice for three years who has not yet completed graduate training will earn a monthly gross wage of 613,000 (EUR 1,700) while a doctor in practice for 40 years or more will earn close to 1.7 million forints, Gulyás said. From January 2022, the pay scale will range from 788,000 forints to 2.1 million and from January 2023 doctors will make between 875,000 forints and 2.4 million forints, Gulyás said. He added that under the law, doctors will be able to earn a maximum of 20% more than what is specified in the pay scale. He said the wage hike would also allow for a phasing out of gratuities. He added that clarity around wages in the sector could also persuade doctors who had left the country to work abroad to return to Hungary. He said that under the new pay scale doctors working 4, 6, or 8-hour shifts would still have the opportunity to work in private practices if they reach an agreement with their hospital. Concerning wage hikes for general practitioners, Gulyás said doctors whose wages do not reach a certain sum would receive wage supplements. He also noted that nurses would receive a 72% wage hike by 2022. Concerning the government’s protective measures against the coronavirus epidemic, Gulyás said there were 36 hospitals treating Covid-19 patients in the country and less than 1% of health-care workers have had to be transferred there from other institutions. He said Hungary was among the countries that had been more effective in combatting the virus. The number of fatalities in central Europe is significantly lower than in Western Europe, he said, adding that the death toll in Hungary was around the central European average, with 90 deaths per one million people.