AMA President, Dr Mukesh Haikerwal, today welcomed the Government's decision to officially recognise the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) training program for rural GPs.
"Rural GPs are the backbone of healthcare in country Australia," Dr Haikerwal said.
"Formal recognition for rural GPs who complete the accredited ACRRM program should help boost Australia's medical workforce in rural and regional areas."
The Australian Medical Council has agreed to accredit ACCRM's training program in the specialty of general practice. Formal Medicare recognition by the Government was the next milestone for ACRRM.
Under the change, ACRRM fellows who have completed this program will be recognised by Medicare as equal to those who have completed the Royal Australasian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) program.
"Both ACRRM and the RACGP provide rural GPs with excellent training and support," Dr Haikerwal said.
"ACRRM's professional development programs are well regarded, and the decision to formally recognise their full training program will give rural GPs a choice of training pathways.
"The AMA, through its Rural Reference Group, has been working with governments to find ways to attract and retain more doctors in country practice.
"Today's decision will assist in that process.
"We encourage the RACGP and ACRRM to continue their close cooperation to support rural doctors."