GP registrar employment agreements for the 2019 training year
UPDATE: Please note, the 2019 NTCER has been released, please use the 2019 NTCER as the minimum terms and conditions for all training placements in 2019.
Do I sign an employment agreement for a training placement starting 2019 before the 2019/20 NTCER is released?
Right now, many GP registrars will be negotiating and signing off their employment agreement for the upcoming 2019 training terms. These employment agreements are required to be based on the minimum terms and conditions described in the National Terms and Conditions for the Employment of Registrars (NTCER).
The NTCER was due for renegotiation in 2018. In the context of sustained funding pressure faced by general practice, and despite the efforts of the negotiating teams, mutual agreement on any changes was not possible. As a result, a new NTCER was not achieved as an outcome of the 2018 negotiations.
This means that the 2017/18 NTCER is applicable to employment agreements for GP training terms commencing in 2019 and until other minimum terms and conditions of employment, or alternative employment arrangements for registrars, are agreed upon.
While GPRA no longer endorses the 2017/18 NTCER as “fair and reasonable” for GP registrars, we recognise that for supervisors, RTOs and registrars it is necessary for the current NTCER to remain in place to ensure a level of certainty for accredited training practices in terms of minimum employment conditions for registrars undertaking placements in 2019 and beyond.
However, registrars should note that, as of 1 July 2018, the base rates of pay have increased due to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) indexation. GPRA, GPSA and the AMA are currently in discussions about an addendum to the NTCER to include these increased pay rates into the NTCER document. In the meantime, you should ensure these updated pay rates are applied as your base rate of pay in your employment agreement.
Moving forward, GPRA recommends that you should ensure that you negotiate a clause in your employment agreement that states the employment agreement will remain in line with any changes to the national minimum terms and conditions for the employment of registrars.
Further advice and updates on the NTCER negotiations will be posted in the GPRA fortnightly eNewsletter. Sign up for our eNewsletter when you become a member for FREE with GPRA.