RNZCGP welcomes record applications & extra funding
RNZCGP welcomes record applications & extra Government funding for GP training programme
The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners welcomes the Government’s decision to provide extra funding for GP training following a record number of applications for the programme, College President Dr Tim Malloy announced today.
The College runs the General Practice Education Programme (GPEP) and Dr Malloy says the extra funding available for GPEP Year 1 registrars, most of whom are employed by the College, is great news and a real boost for general practice in New Zealand.
“It’s early days, but it looks like the hard work that has been put in by the College, the Medical Council of New Zealand (MCNZ) and programme funder Health Workforce New Zealand (HWNZ) over the past few years is starting to pay off,” Dr Malloy says.
He said that by the closing date on 31 May, the College had received more than 200 applications for the 2014/2015 intake to its training programme which starts in December this year – a significant increase over previous years.
“We are delighted that so many doctors have applied for our General Practice Education Programme (GPEP) at a time when we need more doctors choosing general practice as a challenging and rewarding career.
“Applications have been received from throughout New Zealand and the College is now going through our normal selection process prior to making training offers to successful registrars who will enter the three-year training programme in December 2014. They will then be placed in practices all over New Zealand to undergo training.
“The increase in applicants has come at a time when the programme has gone through a significant evolution aimed at making it more attractive to junior doctors,” says Dr Malloy.
“In the past two years the College’s training curriculum has been updated. GPEP Year 1 registrars have also moved from being on tax-free bursaries to being employed after the College was awarded a contract in late 2012 by HWNZ to become the employer of GPEP registrars during GPEP Year 1 – the first, concentrated, 12 months of the three-year GP training programme.
“It’s imperative we get more GPs vocationally trained as many of our older GPs are moving closer to retirement and will need to be replaced. GPs form a vital part of our general practice teams who are delivering primary health care within our communities and we need to train a lot more of them to meet communities’ needs,” Dr Malloy says.