Our Workforce Program aims to develop a sustainable and skilled primary healthcare workforce through the dual provision of workforce and practice support.
The services offered by the Workforce Program include:
- free listing of primary healthcare providers and practice staff job vacancies on our website
- accepting curriculum vitae (CV) from healthcare job seekers and providing a job matching service where possible
- CV assessment and the provision of relevant advice regarding recruitment processes
- advice/assistance on the NSW Health Area of Need program and relevant application processes
- liaising with local Universities and Regional Training Providers to develop the region’s capacity to host medical students, pre-vocational doctors, and GP Registrars
- providing relevant induction and orientation to registrars and health professionals who have recently arrived in the region
Health Workforce Locator
The Department of Health and Aged Care has developed the Health Workforce Locator to check the geographical classification of any location in Australia. The map can tell you if a location is classified as metropolitan, rural or remote and if it has been identified as an area of workforce shortage.
The locator shows the health workforce classification and geographical information of any area.
You can see the workforce classifications:
Section 19AB of the Health Insurance Act 1973
Section 19AB of the Act restricts access to Medicare benefits and requires overseas trained doctors (OTDs) and foreign graduates of accredited medical schools (FGAMS) to work in the Distribution Priority Area (DPA) (previously known as a District of Workforce Shortage) for 10 years from their first Australian medical registration. This is commonly referred to as the 10-year moratorium. For more information, visit the Department of Health and Aged Care website.
Section 19AA of the Health Insurance Act 1973
Section 19AA of the Act applies to all doctors first recognised as medical practitioners in Australia after 1st November 1996 and are not vocationally registered GPs or Fellows of the RACGP. All doctors affected by this section of the Act need to be enrolled in a program approved under Section 3GA of the Act to attract Medicare benefits. For more information, visit the Department of Health and Aged Care website.
Distribution Priority Area (DPA)
From 1 July 2019, a new health workforce Distribution Priority Area (DPA) classification system replaced the Districts of Workforce Shortage Assessment Areas for GPs and Bonded Doctors. This has implications for the majority of general practices in the Nepean Blue Mountains area.
Overseas-trained doctors and foreign graduates of an accredited medical school can access Medicare benefits if they work in certain locations and meet eligibility requirements under section 19AB of the Health Insurance Act 1973. To apply to access Medicare benefits while under the moratorium, overseas-trained doctors need an exemption to get Medicare benefits at their practice location. Our workforce support team can help you to obtain 19AB DPA exemption if you decide to work in a DPA location within the Nepean Blue Mountains region.
Most areas in our region are currently classified as DPA except Penrith, St Marys and McGraths Hill (As of Sep 23).
Area of Need Program
Area of Need (AoN) Program is determined by the NSW Department of Health. It assists employers who are experiencing difficulty recruiting medical practitioners with specialist registration. It allows the recruitment of suitably qualified IMGs to vacant positions approved as an AoN. An AoN only applies to the particular position it was granted and does not apply to a specific geographic area. For more information, visit the NSW Department of Health website.
For further information, please call our Workforce Support Team on 02 4708 8100 or contact us online.
GP Registrar Support
One of our roles as a PHN is to support the general practice workforce. We engage with GPs in our region and support them to provide high quality care to their patients. We are here to support GP registrars to ensure that your time working in our region is successful.
GP Registrar Orientation visits
We provide all new GP registrars with an orientation visit. This visit will help you become familiar with the health services in our region. You will learn how to access key services, programs and support such as HealthPathways, mental health referral options, our chronic disease management MBS billing guide, digital health support and more. To organise a visit complete our contact form below.
Stay up-to-date with GP Events and Initiatives
We hold regular free GP continuing professional development events which you are welcome to register for. Upcoming events can be found on our events calendar.
We will keep you up-to-date with the developments and new initiatives in general practice through our fortnightly Practice News bulletin. Every other fortnight, we send an Upcoming Events email outlining events and educational activities that you can attend. We encourage you to register for our newsletters as soon as you start your placement.
Closed Registrar Facebook Group
We invite you to join our Nepean Blue Mountains Registrar Facebook Group (only for registrars working in our region). We encourage you to use the group to communicate and connect with other registrars in the region. We will also use this group to keep you up-to-date with upcoming news and events.
Other Useful Resources
If you have any questions or to arrange an orientation, contact our Workforce Liaison Officer, Kate Wennerbom via email, or call on 4708 8100.
Workforce Prioritisation Program (WPP)
The NSW and ACT Primary Health Networks (PHNs) have been selected by the Department of Health and Aged Care to conduct the Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) Workforce Planning and Prioritisation (GP WPP) activity across NSW and ACT. We are part of the consortium led by Capital Health Network (CHN), ACT’s PHN and funded until 2025.
The GP WPP consortium will provide robust and independent recommendations to inform the geographic distribution and placement of registrars to meet the community’s current and future GP workforce needs. This advice, provided to the Department, will guide the two GP training colleges (RACGP and ACRRM) in their selection and placement allocation processes. The Department will work with the colleges on how GP WPP advice will guide registrar distribution and enable measuring success related to the location and distribution of training settings. In the future, the training colleges may make plans to build or improve the ability to train GPs in high priority locations where registrars may have not been placed before.
Our region is unique as we have both peri-urban and rural areas, which pose different challenges in terms of the health workforce. The development of the Aerotropolis and expected population growth may put further pressure on health services. In our more rural areas, attracting new doctors can be challenging due to location. The ageing population in our region also poses significant workforce issues as there is an insufficient number of GPs to replace them as part of the succession planning process.
Since February this year, we have been doing ongoing consultations with various stakeholders, including registrars, GP supervisors, practice managers and the community. Our Workforce Team will continue to undertake analysis and provide advice that will guide the college’s selection and placement allocation processes to the Department.
GP Workforce Advisor EOI
We are seeking GP supervisors with current knowledge and a passion for GP training to facilitate engagement with GP supervisors, registrars and general practices. The GP Workforce Advisor/s will provide input into the GP WPP. This role will support the WPP team to conduct a workforce needs assessment, identify training capacity, and provide recommendations to both training Colleges for priority placement of registrars in the region. This program plays a key role in informing College planning of GP registrar training including the quality and distribution of training to meet community health needs and the needs of multiple stakeholders.
To know more and to register your interest, visit the healthcare professionals careers page.