GP training selection handed to colleges

2 minute read

Control of GP training selection will be taken over by the RACGP and ACRRM, the government has announced


The federal government has handed control of GP training selection to the RACGP and ACRRM, splitting the responsibility 90-10 between the two colleges.

 Federal Assistant Health Minister Dr David Gillespie announced the decision today in Hobart, saying it was an important part of the health workforce reform agenda and would give the colleges a greater role in the “management and conduct” of GP training.  

As of next year, the RACGP will get to choose 1350 of the candidates for the 1500 GP training places, with the rural-oriented ACRRM to select 150.

Both colleges said they had been working hard to take over selection of GP registrars ever since the government flagged its intention to shut down GPET two years ago.

“It makes sense,” RACGP President Dr Bastian Seidel told TMR.  “It is essential for us as an academic medical college to regain control over selection – it is what we are meant to be doing.”

Above all, he said the RACGP would be looking for applicants with “commitment”.

“Often there are people who apply but might not have a particular interest in general practice.   

“We don’t want to come second best. We want to compete with other medical colleges for the best candidates out there.”

ACRRM President Ruth Stewart said ACRRM’s selection role would be a key factor in building a rural training pipeline.

She said ACRRM would focus on attracting junior doctors who were “excited” about a career in rural or remote practice and had a commitment to becoming a rural generalist.

The government has said it would apply a ceiling of 1500 GP trainees annually as of 2018.

Dr Gillespie also announced the government would invest $220 million a year in Australian General Practice Training, the government agency that oversees GP training delivered by the nine regional training organisations.

More than 2200 applications were received by AGPET for GP training places in the 2017 intake.  

As of next year, applicants will be required to pay the colleges a non-refundable fee to apply to be considered for training.  The RACGP will charge $725 and ACRRM $700.

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