Hello GPRA members,
It’s been a huge month with Board and Advisory Council meetings, and visits to Parliament House. The GPRA Advisory Council reconvened F2F for the first time since prior to COVID. Every appointed Registrar Liaison Officer (RLO) is a member of the GPRA President’s Advisory Council, including our independents – the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and International Medical Graduates (IMGs). Whilst not all of the RLOs were in the room, we had representation from both Colleges, and from Remote Vocational Training Scheme (RVTS) from all States and Territories except Western Australia and New South Wales. Nonetheless, we canvassed and developed our strategic priorities for the forthcoming year. We also had an opportunity to interact with the GPSN Executive about their future endeavours and welcomed in their new 2024 National Chair Shawn Yang. High on the priorities for 2024 is continuing our work around GP registrar pay and conditions, as well as further development of dispute resolution and pastoral care supporting GPs in training at times of distress and uncertainty. Please do reach out via our contact form should you require assistance. Next year we will build on this year’s Council and will be sending out ‘Save the Dates’ to RLOs soon.
Speaking of RLOs – calling all WA registrars – we need you to help us work with the training Colleges in WA. If you are interested in becoming an RLO, we would welcome you with open arms. It is a paid position, you get to credit your extended skills term with the time spent, and you are funded to attend the Advisory Council at the end of the year. Please reach out to our CEO Joanne Chapman at firstname.lastname@example.org who will be able to put you in touch with the right contacts.
This month I attended Parliament House as an invited guest of The Hon Sophie Scamps at her roundtable for ‘Friends of GP’. There were many Senators in attendance, representing constituents from Darwin to Campbelltown and Central Coast NSW. It was heartening to see that these Senators understood the unique pressures of general practice. They were keen to develop proposals to further our endeavours for base rate parity, leave entitlements, and promotion of the best specialty in medicine – general practice.
As the year draws to a close, I have taken time out to reflect on the incredible work GPRA has managed to achieve during my first year as GPRA President. I am immensely proud of the work that our Board, the GPRA staff and our membership have achieved. We kicked off the year with a bang, placing a budget submission in front of the Health Minister calling for base rate parity and leave entitlements – namely paid parental leave, study leave and exam leave. This conversation has continued and as I write this now, we have a number of our fellow stakeholders and Colleges calling for similar – equal pay for GP registrars when they enter the GP training program and portability of the important entitlements that we have identified. We continue to advocate fiercely for the future of GP.
Merry Christmas to our members and have a safe and relaxing holiday period.
See you again in 2024.