GPRA not continuing NTCER negotiations, here is what’s next

14 September 2018

GPRA is working towards a more modern and equitable approach to the NTCER

As many of you may have seen in this week's special member communique, the GPRA Board has determined that there is no value in continuing with the current NTCER negotiations.

Prior to the commencement of the NTCER 2018 negotiations, GPRA raised concerns about the negotiation process, especially in relation to the biennial truncated schedule and the lack of opportunity for appropriate good faith bargaining.

GPRA also raised member concerns regarding the 13-week billing reconciliation cycle utilised by a minority of practices. Issues relating to payment of on-call and after-hours work for registrars as a component of their GP training, most often in rural placements involving local hospital services, were also raised.

From the outset, General Practice Supervisors Australia (GPSA) position was that the “NTCER in its current form is balanced and fair".

Our withdrawal from the negotiations draws attention to the need to replace the NTCER with a more holistic approach which addresses the critical issues facing general practice, especially in rural and remote areas, and contributes to a sustainable profession.

GPRA no longer considers that it is viable to endorse the 2017/18 NTCER as “fair and reasonable” for GP registrars.

What next?

In short, a modern, equitable negotiation process is needed as well an NTCER document that is truly fair and reasonable for both GP registrars AND training practices.

What will happen to my 2019 employment agreement?

We recognise that supervisors, RTOs and registrars may consider that 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.

The current NTCER will apply to 2019 employment agreements. Remember to have a signed employment agreement in place before starting your training practice. Don't sign anything which you don't agree to and ensure you understand everything in your employment agreement.

GPRA will continue to provide advice to all registrars on the appropriate interpretation of the existing NTCER and to assist with resolving concerns that registrars may have with their employment agreements.

What will GPRA do now?

GPRA is seeking a better way of understanding and modernising the arrangements under which GP registrars take their journey toward independent general practice. In the coming weeks, GPRA will be talking to the Department of Health and engaging with other GP sector stakeholders to work towards a more modern and equitable approach to the employment of registrars in general practice settings.

General Practice Registrars Australia or 03 9629 8878

See GPRA's latest news.

Become a GPRA member — it's free and takes one minute to join.

The NTCER covers the terms and conditions of GP Registrars' employment.