Medicine & Liberty : Network of liberty oriented doctors

Medicine & Liberty
Sentier de la Tour-Carrée 9
CH-1800 Vevey - Switzerland
Tel & fax: 41 21 922 60 82

MedLib Comparative Study on Physician Autonomy


Cross-country physician survey conducted for MedLib by Consensus Research covering US, Switzerland, Germany & Singapore, on the impact of health care environments on professional autonomy and mission.

To  video presentation of preliminary results:

AAPS Conference 2010 (Speaker Dr Alphonse Crespo/You-Tube)

To media summaries:

US  -  Singapore  - German/Swiss 



To deck summary


The study targeted 1000 GPs and specialists from the four selected nations. Questions covered issues such as the role of doctors in society, the impact of third parties on doctor-patient relationship or on freedom of access to innovation. 

In all four countries, doctors proved defensive about their present role in health care.  Only 54% express significant satisfaction with the quality of care they are able to provide to patients. Positive ratings of specific aspects of medical practice fall into a low 15%-35% range, with most dissatisfaction centered around administrative paperwork that doesn’t allow doctors enough time for patients [69%].

Physicians grieve a loss of autonomy that no longer allows them to treat each patient as an individual, rather than as a statistic. Nearly three out of four surveyed doctors [70%] consider “professional autonomy” as crucial to proper medical practice, with only 38% currently satisfied with their freedom to select adequate prescription medicines and procedures without government or bureaucratic interference. Dissatisfaction with lack of professional autonomy is more pronounced in Germany [62%] and the U.S. [47%] than in Singapore [9%] or Switzerland [17%].

Doctors hold government accountable for the obstacles they face in their practices, and sense that their professional associations have failed to represent them effectively: Only 7% of doctors are satisfied with the effectiveness of their professional medical associations in influencing health care policy and supporting their interests. Dissatisfaction with malpractice lawsuits and insurance costs [51%], with excessive patient workloads imposed by third party administrators [50%,] and with delays in government regulatory approval of new medicines and procedures [45%] rank amongst other significant sources of concern.

March 27, 2011