Featured Doctor

RURIK, Prof Imre

Hungary : family doctor

Professor Imre RURIK [MD, PhD, MSc] is Head, Department of Family and Occupational Medicine, University of Debrecen in Hungary. Here he responds to the WONCA Editor's questions.

What work are you doing currently?

Since 1989, I have been a family doctor in Budapest.

In 2008, I was appointed chairman of the Department of Family and Occupational Medicine, in Debrecen. Family medicine was only recognised in Hungary as a specialty, in 1992, and then Departments of Family Medicine were established at the four Hungarian medical faculties. I was thus only the second family physician who was appointed as chair of one of these Departments.

I insisted on keeping my practice, but now I can work there only two days a week. Other working days and also the weekend are full with teaching activity and university tasks.

My research activity is wide, with my main topics being nutritional related metabolic diseases (diabetes, obesity) and andrology. The important papers could be checked on http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=rurik%20i

Other interesting things you have done previously?

I worked for 10 years as a urologist and during these years spent many shifts in primary care emergency services (at night and weekends). In these years I loved the primary care aspect and thereafter changed my career. I did not give up urology altogether as I run andrology / family planning consultations in my GP office.

Editor’s note: Imre’s Curriculum Vitae suggests he is a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army reserves and is a qualified Mediator in Health. He also has a PhD from Semmelweis University, Budapest (and in 2010 obtained his Dr. habil. from the University of Debrecen)

I note you have a PhD and Dr. habil.?

My PhD Thesis was on the subject of Primary care evaluations on nutrition and health of elderly). I was  the first Hungarian GP who achieved the PhD level at the Semmelweis University in Budapest and some years after the degree of Habilitation in medicine at the University of Debrecen.

What are your interests in work and outside work?

As university teacher, outside work I advertise the importance of primary prevention, and I think physical activity (in an age dependent dosage) is the best way to do this. I usually play tennis, on other days I go jogging or more frequently, swimming in summer and skiing in winter. On holidays and in a very rare leisure time, he prefers reading historical books, mainly on historical politicians of the 20th century.

What do you like about your interactions in WONCA?

The Research Organisation of Hungarian Family Physician (CSAKOSZ) joined to the WONCA group 3 years ago. I have been a regular attender of WONCA meetings, since 1998 (Dublin, World conference), and took part almost all European conferences with posters and presentations, and in recent years as chair of sessions.

There is a wide gap between the primary care systems of the Western and Eastern European countries, and in the East, we have a serious handicap in education and research as well.

I like to try to invite more Hungarian GPs to participate at WONCA conferences, but because of serious financial situation in Hungary they cannot afford to attend.