The National Terms and Conditions for the Employment of Registrars (NTCER) is the legal document which outlines the minimum employment terms and conditions under which GPRA and GPSA agree GP registrars undergoing vocational training through the Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) program are to be employed.
These terms and conditions cover working hours, education and supervision, leave and additional support, and a remuneration schedule which has been updated annually in line with the indexation of the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) and increases to superannuation.
Since the framework for the 2022 review of GP trainee employment terms and conditions was announced in June 2022, GPRA and GPSA have completed member surveys, a joint submissions process, and a series of solutions-focused workshops.
On Tuesday 15th November, working groups appointed to represent the voices of both organisations’ members had their first meeting to discuss feedback elicited through the process to date. Both parties have agreed that there is scope within the current funding model to achieve improvements to GP trainee employment conditions through the NTCER and met again this week to determine the format for those negotiations.
The first meeting provided each organisation with an opportunity to outline their findings and suggest areas of the NTCER that could be revised to improve the minimum standards of employment for GP trainees. We also discussed other employment models and how they could interact with the NTCER. It is worth noting that this process is being conducted with GPRA and GPSA in agreement over the need to develop improvements for GP trainee employment without these negatively impacting the sustainable delivery of quality in-practice training amidst the challenges currently facing the primary care sector. The meeting demonstrated that GPRA and GPSA remain committed to:
- Respectful, supported working environments driving quality learning and training
- Parity in employment conditions for both full-time and part-time GP trainees
- Increasing income potential where possible
- Improving consistency and transparency around the calculation of GP trainee income
- Addressing ways to support administrative time and study leave
- Ensuring flexibility is built into the NTCER now to provide scope for future changes to the primary care sector generally and GP/RG training specifically
- Working together to advocate for broader system reform to attract more doctors to the speciality with a focus on
- portability of leave entitlements
- cross-specialty parity of entitlements including parental leave
- Medicare underfunding.
Our working groups will continue to support the negotiating process and stakeholders will be kept updated about the outcome(s), noting our continued aspiration to conclude this process before the 2023.1 semester.