Compact with the Commonwealth Government

Launched in May 2018, this Compact is a joint understanding between the Federal Government and the College on key issues impacting the health outcomes of rural and remote Australians.

The Compact formally recognises the College's positon as a key national stakeholder on behalf of rural doctors and the communities we serve. It confirms the College position as a key national stakeholder, and acknowledges ACRRM's role as a peak body in setting standards for training general practitioners and rural generalist doctors. It also highlights the important role that the College and its members play in providing high quality health care to people living in rural and remote communities.

Consistent with the College Vision: Better health for rural and remote people through access to skilled rural doctors, the Compact recognises that disparities in health outcomes for rural Australians still exist, and that proactive policies are required to address these inequities. This is particularly the case for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

We would like to thank our members for their positive response to the College's proposal to proceed with a Compact, for their engagement with the process of developing the compact, and ultimately for putting their faith in us to proceed with these negotiations on their behalf.

The Compact covers a number of general areas:

Rural Generalism - the Compact recognises our expertise in rural generalism and the integral role of the College in working with the Rural Health Commissioner to develop National Rural Generalist Pathways.

Training the Future Rural and Remote Medical Workforce - both parties will work to improve workforce distribution, reform general practice training arrangements, and support non-vocationally registered doctors to obtain Fellowship.

The College and the Commonwealth will work with key stakeholders in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' health, to increase the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander doctors achieving Fellowship.

Rural Workforce Policy, Planning and Distribution - both parties will work to develop and evaluate policies to support rural and remote communities with improved access to quality health care services.

Digital Health - the College will work with the Government to foster innovation and the adoption of digital health strategies including the My Health Record, recognising the potential for telehealth to enhance rural health care but not as a replacement for face-to-face services.

Rural and Remote Mental Health - the government will support the College to further develop and enhance its training and professional development to increase the capacity of members to provide mental health services, in addition to working on a range of strategies to improve access to mental health services.

Doctor Health and Wellbeing - the College will continue to play a key role in setting quality standards and developing innovative models of care to support rural and remote practitioners at all stages of their career.

A copy of the Compact can be downloaded here.