Commencing 11 March 2019, overseas trained doctors seeking visas to work as General Practitioners will be required to obtain a Health Workforce Certificate from a Rural Workforce Agency.

This new requirement means that overseas trained doctors will be directed away from well-serviced metropolitan areas to areas of need, such as regional, rural and remote communities.

The initiative is aimed at reducing numbers of overseas trained doctors entering the primary healthcare system by around 200 each year for the next four years under the skilled migration program.

The number of General Practitioners in Australia has increased three times more than population growth over the past decade, due to a surge in locally trained medical graduates and a continued high intake of overseas trained doctors.

Senator Bridget McKenzie, Minister for Regional Services said the visas for General Practitioners initiative would allow the Government to better manage the growth and distribution of the national medical workforce.

Source: Media Release Senator the Hon. Bridget McKenzie Deputy Leader of The Nationals Minister for Regional Services Minister for Sport Minister for Local Government and Decentralisation Senator for Victoria dated 11 March 2019.