While the medical students deployed in Covid units are a precious help, their trainee status condemns them to work 12-hour shifts for a low salary. During this epidemic period, hundreds of …
While the medical students deployed in Covid units are a precious help, their trainee status condemns them to work 12-hour shifts for a low salary.
During this epidemic period, hundreds of medical students joined the teams of the covid units to help the nursing staff. Often requisitioned during their internship, students find themselves on the front line alongside doctors, forced to chain guards of several hours for a low salary.
Students paid 50 euros per week
Nursing student in the third year, Matthieu explains to Franceinfo to do 12-hour guards paid € 1.42 an hour. His comrades in the first year earn 0.80 cents an hour and those in the second year € 1.08. This salary is explained by the fact that medical students are officially on internship and not employed.
However, current circumstances force them to take on more responsibility and be more operational than they need to be. “Normally, during an internship, we are added to the team, if we are not there, that should not change anything in the functioning of the service,” explains the student to Franceinfo. We are not at all in normal internship conditions which would allow us to learn our work correctly. ”
Being paid as an intern while Matthieu performs the functions of a nursing assistant (of which he has a diploma) is very devaluing for him. “We are sent to the front line and we are despised. You seem to be worth nothing. It’s nice to thank us, to tell us that we are heroes, but that’s not what makes us live, he argues. We are told: “you want to help, well you do it for free, or for 50 € per week”. ”
The ill-being of medical students
The condition of medical students was already difficult before the epidemic. In 2018, a French study conducted by psychiatrists and public health specialists on more than 2,000 medical interns showed that 12% of psychiatric interns believe they are dependent on cannabis, compared to 6% for other medical students. The phenomenon does not exclude hard drugs: 24% of interns in psychiatry claim to consume ecstasy occasionally or regularly against 17% for interns of other specialties.
The report mentions “worrying consumption” of alcohol in 40% of them. This situation is explained by a stressful work environment due in particular to a level of responsibility and significant pressure. In addition, there are difficult working conditions linked to the lack of resources in health establishments.