AMA says proposed tax changes would hit rural workforce

14 Mar 2017

The AMA has called on the Government to dismiss elements of a new discussion paper from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), which have the potential to stop the flow of young medical graduates choosing to work in rural and remote Australia.

The ATO paper, Review of ATO advice on scholarships, effectively recommends taxing some scholarship programs aimed at addressing medical workforce shortages

AMA President, Dr Michael Gannon, said today that the ATO proposals are at odds with the Government’s welcome current commitment to provide incentives to attract more doctors and other health professionals to live and work in country areas.

“Just as the Government, led by Assistant Minister for Health David Gillespie, is encouraging doctors to work in under-serviced communities, particularly in rural and remote areas, the ATO wants to tax scholarships if the conditions of the scholarship include a commitment to work in these areas,” Dr Gannon said.

“The ATO's plan would significantly diminish the level of support provided to scholarship students for their education, and take away any incentive to work in rural and remote areas.

Media release

Read the AMA submission to the ATO Review