The process of having Rural Generalist Medicine recognised as a specialist field has taken a significant step forward.
The Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) have submitted a joint application to the Medical Board of Australia (MBA) to formalise national recognition of the distinct work and skill set of Rural Generalists.
ACRRM President Dr Ewen McPhee said the application was a critical step towards the goal of achieving a thriving Rural Generalist workforce and would help meet the healthcare needs of people living outside urban areas.
He said having their skills formally recognised, just like other specialists such as pediatricians, would make the field more attractive to doctors.
"Formal national recognition will create a clear career path for aspiring Rural Generalists," the Central Queensland-based doctor said.
"It will also address the many system barriers that trainees and practitioners currently face in gaining their qualifications and providing their skilled services in rural and remote areas.
"A strong Rural Generalist workforce is a critical component in addressing the well-documented inequities in access to healthcare for rural and remote communities."
RACGP Vice President and Chair of the Rural Council Associate Professor Ayman Shenouda said it was pleasing to see the two bodies work together to prepare the submission within just one year of the National Rural Generalist Taskforce report being presented to the Minister.
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