AMA cautiously welcomes new 457 visa arrangements
The AMA has cautiously welcomed the Government’s new visa arrangements, but is seeking more detail and clarification of the possible impact of the changes on medical workforce shortages.
The AMA has been advised that doctors will still be eligible for the new Temporary Skills Shortage Visa, which will replace 457 visas from March 2018. Information is now available on the immigration website showing that no changes have been made to the medical occupations eligible for a 457 visa, although the maximum length of future 457 visas will be two to four years depending on occupation. Existing 457 visa holders will continue on the same conditions they have now.
AMA President, Dr Michael Gannon, acknowledged the huge contribution that international medical graduates have made to the Australian medical workforce, particularly in rural areas. With Australia now in a position to produce sufficient numbers of locally-trained medical graduates to meet current and future need, the Government needs to step up policy efforts to encourage local graduates to work in the areas and specialties where they are needed.