HELP for medicos to work in the bush

The government wants to increase medical and nurse practitioners working in rural/remote Australia by reducing, in part or whole, their study debts

It’s intended to “encourage initial employment and increased retention of health practitioners” there, thus “addressing issues of equity and access to healthcare in these areas.”

The government expects it to “attract” around 850 doctors and nurse practitioners a year.

It went down well with lobbies, yesterday. “A game changer” said Luke Sheehy from the Australian Technology Network, (which has three members with med schools).

Vicki Thomson from the Group of Eight called it, “a much-needed incentive for domestically trained medical students to work in rural and remote Australia,” (members of the Eight have four med schools in the Murray Darling MS network).

And Nick Klomp, VC of Central Queensland U, which has a new regional medical pathway programme, thanked for the government for “widening the doors for more regional students to remain in their communities post-study.”

Whether it will help medical skill shortages in the bush over time CMM has no clue – but it will certainly give government MPs and duty senators good news to announce.

As Universities Australia put it yesterday, “any move to get more doctors and nurses out to these areas to keep locals healthy is a good thing.”