Several hundred people gathered in the afternoon in Paris in front of the Pantheon, before taking the direction of the Ministry of Health, noted an AFP journalist.

The demonstrators marched through a forest of signs reading “Farewell my dreams” or “Poorly trained students, poorly cared for patients”.

“Future doctors, not minions”, we heard in the ranks of the demonstration organized in Nantes, which gathered 300 people according to the police. Another procession took place in Lyon, gathering 700 demonstrators according to the prefecture, behind a long banner “White blouse, black anger”.

Gathered at the call of a vast inter-union, the demonstrators protested against the addition of a fourth year of internship in general medicine, which must be carried out “as a priority in areas where the medical demography is under-dense”, according to the social security financing bill (PLFSS).

With this 4th year of internship, and therefore “this 10th year of medical studies, nearly one out of two students calls the choice of general medicine into question”, estimates Yaël Thomas, president of the Anemf (medical students ), citing figures from a recent survey.

“The reform introduces the doubling of outpatient internships without doubling the internship supervisors”, who are today 12,000, deplores for his part Raphaël Presneau, president of Isnar-IMG (interns in general medicine). In other words, “interns will find themselves alone in their premises, supervised by doctors who may be 20 km from them”.

“It will be one more year paid for student status, which is moreover unsupervised. It’s dangerous for doctors and for patients”, fulminates in the Parisian procession Camille Fuilla, 23, stethoscope around his neck, in 5th year of study in Bordeaux.

– “Tired of plugging the gaps” –

In Nantes, Carolane Seiller, future 27-year-old general practitioner, holds up a sign “A dead doctor does not heal!” to denounce the psychosocial risks weighing on his corporation. “We are all starting to get a little tired of plugging the breaches in the system when we were never responsible for these breaches,” she notes.

Those concerned are already taking their share of the effort, assures Valentine Silva, 24, intern in the third semester of general medicine: “In my class, we are 140 general practitioners in training: two thirds, even more, have the project of settling in the countryside or in medical deserts. In our internships we go everywhere, we are aware of that”.

To prepare for the next generation with future doctors, “we must not send them to hell in the depths of a medical desert and let them be disgusted”, declared in the Lyon event Dr Michel Tille, of the Confederation of French Medical Unions (CSMF) of the Rhône. He pleads for medical centers “well placed, in towns with at least one college”, where young doctors can find support from colleagues.

Against a fourth year “which is likely to increase the anxiety of the students”, the representatives of the profession consider it more useful to accompany the installation by aid for transport and housing.

“We are 90,000 generalists: we are not enough, and we will not be for some time”, argues Elise Fraih, president of ReAGJIR, which brings together young people installed and replacements.

Faced with the sling, the Minister of Health, François Braun, dropped the ballast by announcing an amendment to the PLFSS to allow certain internships to be done in the hospital, and not only in town.

“An advance”, concede the unions, which however consider it “largely insufficient”. Especially since the government amendment was not retained in the version of the Social Security budget voted by the Senate, and will have to be presented again at second reading in the Assembly.

The government should use article 49.3 of the Constitution before the deputies at the beginning of next week on this text.