Croatia

Professional Recognition Process
Responsible Organisations: 
Croatian Medical Chamber

 

Entity name: 

Croatian Medical Chamber

Contact Data: 

Croatian Medical Chamber
Ulica fra Grge Tuškana 37
10000 Zagreb
Croatia

Phone:
+38514500830
+38514500840

Fax:
+38514655465

Web URL (Croatian):
http://www.hlk.hr

Web URL (English):
http://www.hlk.hr/Default.aspx?sec=285

Contact Person:
Žarka Rogić, MD

Contact Person's e-mail:
zarka.rogic@hlk.hr
hlk@hlk.hr

Requirements and Documents needed
Documents needed: 
Lists of documents needed are avilable at the following link: http://www.hlk.hr/fgs.axd?id=4136

 

Directive 2005/36/EC Applicability: 

Yes.

Other Requirements: 

Available on request in specific cases via the contact provided in Contact data.

Deadlines and Duration
Deadlines: 
Deadlines are regulated by: “ Zakon o reguliranim profesijama i priznavanju inozemnih stručnih kvalifikacija” published in “Narodne novine” (Official gazette of the Republic of Croatia, No: 124/2009, 45/2011).
 
Available online: www.nn.hr.
 
In ideal case, if all the documents are in order, approximately  3 months for EU citizens with qualifications acquired in EU countries. For more detailed information in individual cases, please contact our contact person listed above.

 

Re-certification required: 

Every 6 years, as per Croatian Medical Chamber's regulations.

Re-certification Information: 

Renewal of licence to practice issued by the Croatian Medical Chamber is done every 6 years, during which time every doctor has the obligation to collect 120 points in CME activities.

Internship
Internship required?: 
yes
How long does it last and what are the conditions to start with it and to finish it?: 

Internship is required, if it is also necessary to undergo internship in applicant's  domestic  country in order to obtain a licence to practice.
If applicant doctor has qualifications acquired in non-EU country, the internship is obligatory.

Internship in Croatia lasts for 5 months, according to specified programme for Croatian citizens.

Regulated by: “Pravilnik o pripravničkom stažu doktora medicine” published in “Narodne novine” (Official gazette of the Republic of Croatia, No: 114/2013, 157/2013, 30/2014). Available online: www.nn.hr.

The only condition that needs to be fulfilled for application for an internship is to have a diploma after having finished Medical School in Republic of Croatia or a diploma recognized in the recognition of foreign professional qualifications process.

The interns will need to undergo a prespecified programme, and upon completion of relevant programme (as shown by a completed logbook) they will be allowed to take the state exam, which is a prerequisite to obtain a valid licence issued by the Croatian Medical Chamber.

Is it required to start with postgraduate medical training?: 

All doctors are required to choose a specialisation they will undergo, and for some specialisations there are specific requirements.

What is the procedure for a foreign doctor to start with it?: 

All the requirements are listed in the following document “Pravilnik o specijalističkom usavršavanju doktora medicine”, published in “Narodne novine” (Official gazette of the Republic of Croatia) No: 100/2011, 133/2011, 54/2012, 49/2013 with the additional requirement of the applicant to hold a B2 certificate for knowledge of Croatian language.

 

Postgraduate Medical Training
Responsible Organisations: 
The Ministry of Health (website in Croatian language available at http://www.zdravlje.hr and website in English language available at http://www.zdravlje.hr/en/ministry)
Entity name: 

The Ministry of Health (website in Croatian language available at http://www.zdravlje.hr and website in English language available at http://www.zdravlje.hr/en/ministry)

Selection and Deadlines: 
Minister of health brings the annual plan of specialisations (as defined in the Health Care Act); plan of specialisations takes into account request and needs of health care institutions for certain specialists.

 

Selection Process Description: 

The published text of contest contains the relevant selection process description for training posts which are advertised.

Application Deadlines: 

Depending on the training post advertised, the deadlines are stated in the text of the contest, it is usually 8 days.

Advertisement: 

Institutions that advertise open training posts publish this information in daily press and the “Official Gazette of the Republic of Croatia”; this information should be available at the website of Ministry of Health and Croatian Employment bureau; applicants apply to which positions they want to.

The Ministry of Health (website in Croatian language available at http://www.zdravlje.hr and website in English language available at http://www.zdravlje.hr/en/ministry)
Croatian Employment Bureau (website currently available only in Croatian language at http://www.hzz.hr)
 

Funding of PGT (government-funded/funded by tax/included in healthcare insurance, etc.): 

The costs of training for state institutions are paid directly by the Ministry of Health to those institutions.

In case a doctor wants to have a training post for private purposes (not announced or requested by a public institution) then the doctor can pay for this training either on his own or this training post will be paid by a private institution that announced this training post.

Scientific Associations: 

1. Croatian Medical Chamber (http://www.hlk.hr; in charge of issuing licence to practice, and in charge or professional liability questions. Its mission: The Croatian Medical Chamber (hereinafter referred to as “the Chamber” or HLK) is the independent regulator and professional organization of health care professionals - medical doctors in the Republic of Croatia.

The Chamber promotes and safeguards the rights and interests of medical doctors, works on upgrading the standards of medical practice, protects the reputation of medical professionals and protects patients by ensuring good practice and fostering high standards of care. Medical doctors practicing medicine in the Republic of Croatia must register with the Chamber).

2. Croatian Medical  Association (http://www.hlz.hr; which is a professional scientific association in charge of scientific matters, such as guidelines in each of the specialties, its societies are members of UEMS Sections).

3. Croatian Medical  Union (http://www.hls.hr; which is there to make sure that working conditions for doctors in Croatia are as good as possible, and which is a member of FEMS).

Existent Medical Degrees
Medical Degrees: 
The title of doctor of medicine is awarded by means of a diploma to students completing one of four medical schools in Croatia.
After this, in order to be able to practice, doctors need to obtain a licence issued by the Croatian Medical Chamber.
 
For this, it is necessary to do internship, which consists of a prespecified  5-month programme, and upon its completion (as shown by a completed logbook) they will be allowed to take the state exam, which is a prerequisite to obtain a valid licence issued by the Croatian Medical Chamber.

Those doctors that want to pursue scientific and academic career will have to enter a PhD programme which lasts for 3 years, and with the defending of doctoral thesis they are awarded with a PhD title (in Croatia language a prefix of dr. sc. is added before a doctor's name).
 
Until several years ago there used to be an intermediate step towards PhD title - this was MSc title (in Croatia language a prefix of mr. sc. was added before a doctor's name); it has been replaced with PhD programme.

 

Working Conditions
Salary Gross/Brutto (basic, no oncalls included, in EUR): 

For residents (trainees) approx. 9000 HRK brutto (1200 EUR). For specialists approx. 15000 HRK brutto (2000 EUR).

Used taxation scales, and (if known) average taxation percentage applied to salary: 

Depending on total amount salary, a progressive taxation scheme is applied.

Residents’ salaries are taxed with 25% (although they are near the threshold to the taxed 40%), specialists’ salaries are taxed with 40%.

With other deductions taken from the salary (healthcare insurance, pension fund, local tax) these amount up to approx. 50% of the gross/brutto salary.

Paid Overtime: 
yes
Type of Contracts: 

Predominantly permanent contracts; trial period is usually 3 months, according to current labour law it can be up to 6 months.

Sick Leave: 
yes
Sick leave info: 

Entails a reduction in salary; if it lasts up to 42 days (6 weeks) it is paid from employer's funds and is usually min. 75% of basic salary, after this period it is paid from the health insurance fund where the doctor receives a fixed amount of 4257 HRK netto (according to current regulations for 2014, which are changed annually, approx. 560 EUR).

Paid vacation: 
yes
Vacation info: 

Minimum of 20 working days (Monday-Friday, weekend days - Saturday and Sunday are not counted), usually more – currently defined through the collective agreements.

It is usually used in 2 parts according to approval of employer, and the total vacation days for a year have to be used within a period of July 1st – June 30th.

Maternity leave: 
yes
Maternity leave info: 

It lasts for 12 months, the mother has to use it for a minimum of 6 months, whereas the remaining part (6-8 months) can be used either by mother or father.

In those first 6 months that have to be used by the mother, she is entitled to 100% of salary; for the remaining 6-8 months which can be used by either of parents he/she receive a fixed amount of 2660 HRK from the fund of the healthcare insurance (approx. 350 EUR).

The reason for the possibility of the total maternity leave to be 6+8 (total of 14 months) lies in the fact that mothers have a right to take maternity leave 2 months prior to delivery date (currently allowed through the Law on healthcare insurance).

Social security system like unemployment benefits: 

EEA citizens are equal in benefits in comparison with Croatian citizens (as stated by the Croatian Employment Bureau (website currently available only in Croatian language at http://www.hzz.hr)).

For unemployed persons, the amount received in the first 90 days of obtaining unemployment status cannot be greater than 3850 HRK netto (approx. 506 EUR), after this period it cannot be greater than 1925 HRK netto (approx. 253 EUR).

Type of healthcare – healthcare for free National health system or Health Insurance: 

There is a basic healthcare insurance for all which is mandatory, however with this insurance there is an obligation to participate in healthcare costs (with no upper limit).

People are encouraged to take one of additional voluntary supplemental healthcare insurance (where for a fixed monthly fee the person has most of additional costs covered, with a fixed maximum amount that a person can be charged for).

Other Information
Training Center Acreditation: 

Yes, this is currently underway; competent authority is  the National Committee.

Standards are laid down in “Pravilnik o specijalističkom usavršavanju doktora medicine” (as quoted in 4.4). National Committee will also be conducting regular controls, especially on how training is performed.

Acceptance of foreign trainees for short term: 

There is a possibility for non-Croatian citizens to undergo short term or the whole program of specialisation on their own expense / expense of the country which sends them to the specialist training.

Regulated by Health Care Act, Article 124/4: “Zakon o zdravstvenoj zaštiti”, published in “Narodne novine” No: 150/08, 155/09, 71/10, 139/10, 22/11, 84/11, 154/11, 12/12, 35/2012, 70/2012, 144/2012, 82/2013, 159/13, 22/14).

Mandatory Insurance required (for malpractice): 
yes
Who is responsible for the damage immaterial and material: 

Mandatory insurance is regulated by Health Care Act, Article 124/4: “Zakon o zdravstvenoj zaštiti”, published in “Narodne novine” No: 150/08, 155/09, 71/10, 139/10, 22/11, 84/11, 154/11, 12/12, 35/2012, 70/2012, 144/2012, 82/2013, 159/13, 22/14).

It is the obligation of the employer to take out the insurance. It is also the obligation of the employer to pay for it.

Is there a difference in cases of civil claims and/or criminal procedures and/or disciplinary procedures?: 

For civil claims, it is the employer – as the goal is damage compensation in civil process, the goal is to gain compensation.

For criminal procedures – it is a criminal procedure ”ad nominem” with the main purpose to determine guilt.

For disciplinary procedures – they are run by the Croatian Medical Chamber,  a lawyer is not needed, but is usually hired to make sure that all goes according to regulations.

Perspective towards migration of Healthcare Professionals and additional information: 

Medical workforce, and especially doctors (both specialists and in training), are welcome in Croatia.

However, due to the fact that positions are not so abundant it might take considerable time in terms of months or even years for a doctor to get a training post, especially in urban areas.

The chances are much higher in rural areas, but then with additional obligations in contracts (obligation to stay in that area/institution for a number of years, etc.) - although in recent years this has also become the case with large hospital centres in larger cities.

In general, it will be easier for specialists to find employment.

The adaptation will be very difficult without advanced knowledge of Croatian language.

On the other hand, there is a number of young doctors, fluent in English, German and other languages, that decide to emigrate and get training somewhere else.

Popular countries include those in the west - primarily, but not limited to Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Slovenia, Italy, UK, Ireland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Australia and New Zealand.

Croatian Medical Chamber collects data on physicians’ migrations and forwards them to national authorities and competent EU offices (e.g. ENIC/NARIC office).

As Croatia entered the EU on July 1st 2013, the emigration of Croatian doctors to EU countries became much easier than it was before, with the 1st significant wave of emigration in progress.

Updating of information
Last date this information was checked: 

May 5th, 2014.

Person providing the data and contact (must include e-mail adress): 

Croatian delegate to the EJD

Member of the Committee for International Cooperation of the Croatian Medical Chamber