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GP training placements must be increased - AMA

19 Jul 2013


AMA Family Doctor Week 15-21 July 2013

The Federal Government must act quickly to ensure there are family doctors to meet future health needs by boosting training places.

The AMA urges the Government to increase the intake of both the GP training program and the Prevocational General Practice Placement Program to 1500 places by 2016 and 1700 a year by 2019.

AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, said long-term vision and planning was needed to ensure Australia has enough GPs, now and in the future if we want to deliver real health reform.

“Family doctors are the cornerstone of the Australian health system,” Dr Hambleton said.

“GPs are visited by 80 per cent of the population at least once a year and they are able to treat 90 per cent of all health problems they encounter.

“Family doctors are cost effective and keep the population as healthy as possible through preventive care and early interventions, reducing the burden on hospitals.

“If you want to keep waiting times down and ensure there is a GP in every community, they are worth investing in.”

In addition, the AMA has called for the Practice Incentive Payment for teaching medical students to increase to $200 per teaching session. This would better reflect the cost for GPs of teaching medical students.

“Family doctors need access to infrastructure, teaching tools and resources, and need to be supported to improve their teaching skills,” Dr Hambleton said.

“Supporting our current GPs to teach the next generation of family doctors is vital to meet future community health needs.” 

AMA Family Doctor Week is sponsored by Australian General Practice Training.


19 July 2013

CONTACT:         John Flannery                       02 6270 5477 / 0419 494 761

                             Kirsty Waterford                   02 6270 5464 / 0427 209 753

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Published: 19 Jul 2013