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NZMA Supports Action On Rural Health Workforce

NZMA Supports Call For Action On Rural Health Workforce

The New Zealand Medical Association supports the Rural General Practice Network in its appeal for action on the rural general practice workforce.

"Small communities around New Zealand are facing a crisis because of problems recruiting and retaining health professionals," said Dr Philip Rushmer, who chairs the NZMA General Practitioner Council.

"Doctors who work in rural and regional areas face pressures in addition to those faced by city doctors, in terms of their workloads, and these pressures often lead to higher stress levels. Other countries, such as Canada, Australia and Britain, have government policies to ensure that rural areas have doctors available. New Zealand has no such workforce or recruitment policies in place.

"The people of regional New Zealand deserve nothing less than continuity of general practice care.

"The Rural GP Network has proposed a number of solutions to these problems, and it is important that these be considered as a whole package. We urge the Government and District Health Boards to give serious consideration to the report and its recommendations," Dr Rushmer concluded.

The Rural GP Network report is one of a number of initiatives being taken to find solutions to the workforce problems facing rural and regional areas.

ENDS


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