No desire for own practice: German dentists prefer being employed.

By Dental Tribune International

More and more young dentists in Germany would rather work within a practice than be self-employed. According to the German Dental Association (Bundeszahnärztekammer (BZÄK)), the number of practising dentists is continuously decreasing. Women, in particular, are often not interested in managing their own practices.

Of the 71,926 dental professionals in Germany, a total of 16,715 were employed in a practice on 31 December 2016. For a few years now, dentists in training and those undergoing further education no longer represent the majority in this group. Initially, most dentists, and women especially, remained in an employee-employer relationship after their practical training. Almost two out of three employed dentists are female.

When dentists decide to settle down, it is most often done by taking over an existing practice. In 2016, almost two-thirds of the newly established dentists chose this route, spending an average of €342,000 on acquiring a practice. Thirty per cent of the founders became self-employed by taking over, joining or founding a group practice, while only 7 per cent of dentists chose to start their own one-man business.

The BZÄK continuously records information regarding dental careers and uses the data as a foundation to align its support to the dental profession and the further development of dental job descriptions.