Building a sustainable future for rural practice: the Rural Rescue Package
Many rural and remote communities have found it increasingly difficult to attract and retain doctors with the right mix of skills to meet their health needs, including GPs with advanced skills training who can provide acute services in the hospital setting.
The Australian Medical Association (AMA) and the Rural Doctors Association of Australia (RDAA) have developed a package of measures that recognises both the isolation of rural and remote practice and the need for the right skill mix in these areas. Building a sustainable future for rural practice: the Rural Rescue Package, proposes two tiers of support to revitalise and sustain rural medical services.
The first tier of the Package is designed to encourage more GPs, other specialists and registrars to work in rural areas. It takes into account the greater isolation of rural practice, both for doctors and their families.
The second tier is aimed at boosting the number of doctors in rural areas with essential advanced skills training in a range of areas such as obstetrics, surgery, anaesthetics, acute mental health or emergency medicine. Rural areas need doctors with strong skills in these areas to ensure that communities have access to appropriate acute services locally, including on-call emergency services.
Building a sustainable future for rural practice: the Rural Rescue Package would make a big difference in attracting to country communities the right doctors with the right skills to the right places, both now and into the future.