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Independent Contractors in the Private Sector

Many GP’s engaged in Private Practice are independent contractors. 

Common methods of engagement

The method of engagement varies considerably across practices.  The most common methods are;

  1. A “serviced entity” arrangement whereby the practice supplies an office, administrative support and consumables in return for payment of a facility fee. 
  2. As a contractor where the practice engages a solo GP (or his/her practice company) to undertake work caring for patients.  Often this is as a locum.
  3. As an ”associate” where the doctors agree to share all expenses.

The most suitable arrangement will depend on the individual circumstances of the practice and GP.

Conditions of engagement

The terms and conditions of engagement are almost entirely contained in a contract.  It is vital that the contract is written so as to avoid misunderstandings over issues such as;

  • Services delivered by each party
  • Notice periods
  • Ownership of medical records
  • Restrictions on practice post termination
  • Setting of fees

Further information

For additional advice contact AMA Tasmania.

Doctors employed in the private sector (GPs, Family Planning, Radiologists etc.) 

Conditions of employment for doctors employed in the private sector are subject to federal Industrial Relations legislation.  The minimum conditions are contained in the National Employment Standards (NES) of the Fair Work Act 2009.  These standards apply to all employees in Australia. 

The 10 minimum entitlements of the NES are:

  1. Maximum weekly hours
  2. Requests for flexible working arrangements
  3. Parental leave and related entitlements
  4. Annual leave
  5. Personal carers leave and compassionate leave
  6. Community service leave
  7. Long service leave
  8. Public holidays
  9. Notice of termination and redundancy pay
  10. Fair Work Information Statement 

Members can contact AMA for assistance with a review of their contract.  For more information on the NES and conditions generally see the website of the Fair Work Ombudsman 

GP Registrars

GP Registrars (GPT 1, 2, 3 &4) employed on the Australian General Practice Training Program, have terms and conditions contained in an agreement brokered by the AMA called the National Terms and Conditions for Employment of Registrars.  For information see:

Doctors at Family Planning Tasmania

Doctors employed at Family Planning Tasmania are employed under the following:

Other important legislation impacting on employment conditions

Other helpful documents

  • AMA Doctor's Guidelines for Implementing Flexibility (pdf file)
  • AMA Management Guidelines for Implementing Flexibility (pdf file)

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