If you’re exploring the opportunities that the Queensland Rural Generalist Pathway offers, you’ve probably got a few questions. Check out some of the most frequently asked questions about the program below.
No. Your career path is up to you. You’re free to change course whenever you like.
Training as a rural generalist actually increases your career options. The Generalist Pathway not only qualifies you for life as a rural generalist, it also sets you up for a career in almost any other medical field. Our Fellows are strongly positioned for a myriad of job opportunities and have gone on to roles in clinical leadership, international aid work, expedition and retrieval medicine and entry into other highly specialised training programs. To date, every Generalist Pathway Trainee or Fellow who has applied to an alternative specialist program has gained entry.
Rural generalists earn a similar salary to other specialists and often reach higher pay levels significantly faster. In fact, our fast track program embedded in The Generalist Pathway allows our interns to achieve senior appointments after three years of commencing the program, often up to doubling their salary in comparison to peers not on the Pathway.
The Generalist Pathway is designed to keep your career options as open as possible. By starting as a rural generalist, you actually open yourself up to more diverse training and skills development than other specialities. At the end of The Generalist Pathway, you can always make your way back to another speciality; the flexibility and diversity of the Pathway’s training is a fantastic way to keep your options open, especially if you aren’t 100% decided on a career speciality yet.
This is not true in most cases. Many Rural Generalists complete anaesthetics advanced skills training but there is a limited availability of anaesthetics training positions statewide. It is expected that Rural Generalist Trainees undertaking anaesthetics advanced skills training are doing so with the intention of delivering elective anaesthetic services in a rural community after training. Trying to use the QRGP as a short cut on the way to anaesthetics specialist training is not fair to genuine Rural Generalist Trainees or to those pursuing specialist training. This behaviour is looked on poorly by both QRGP and the anaesthetics training scheme. A genuine change of career path can and does happen quite successfully.
Our Pathway is open to citizens of Australia and New Zealand and Australian permanent residents who have completed a medical degree from an accredited Australian university, or are in their final year of study. For detailed criteria, please visit our Essential information page.
The QRGP is happy to provide support and vocational guidance to ADF Trainees where a long-term rural engagement is considered likely, however we do not accept direct entry applications from students with ADF commitments.
The training and placement of medical ADF Trainees is coordinated by the ADF and placement at specific locations is required both during training and once Fellowship is achieved. The vast majority of these placement sites are not in rural locations. ADF Trainees have significant service return requirements, which generally do not fit with rural and remote placement.
Yes. The QRGP is not the only track to a Rural Generalist career. If you want to pursue a career as a Rural Generalist independently, we recommend you enrol with ACRRM or RACGP for Fellowship training. Here are some things to consider:
- you will need to be eligible to apply for a general practice training position with Australian General Practice Training (AGPT);
- you will be subject to the same credentialing process as Rural Generalist Trainees and as such require completion of milestones equivalent to Rural Generalist Medicine Prevocational Certification as well as an accredited advanced skill matched to the needs of the employing hospital;
- you should consult ACRRM for advice regarding the ACRRM Prevocational Certification process (refer to the ACRRM RPL factsheet on the Forms and guides page for more information);
- you should consider your preference for vocation vs. location when selecting an advanced skill to pursue;
- you should seek advice from Rural Generalists in your location of interest, your Regional Training Organisation, College and other contacts.
In order to become a Rural Generalist you will need to obtain:
- FACRRM which includes an Advanced Specialised Training (AST) post of 12 months duration; or
- FRACGP plus FARGP, which includes a post of 12 months duration as above and acquisition of abilities and skills specified in ACRRM Curriculum Statements for Obstetrics and Women’s Health (except where the certified AST is in Obstetrics)
If you already have significant experience you should make an application for recognition of prior learning to your College as part of your Fellowship training.
On occasion, the QRGP seeks interest from postgraduate medical officers who may be interested in joining the Pathway. For more information click here.
We’re here to help and are happy to offer support and information to individuals interested in pursuing a career as a Rural Generalist; please contact us with any questions you may have.
Training and Skills
This depends on the trajectory of your intended career path. For specific information on training endpoints, click here.
You can become a rural GP in a number of ways and The Generalist Pathway is one option for those who want to pursue this career track. Our Pathway suits rural practitioners in both hospital and GP settings who want to extend the scope of their practice with an advanced skill. Click here for more information on our advanced specialised training offerings.
Yes. Mandated vocational training is a crucial part of completing your generalist training; additional information on the use of professional development leave for vocational training is available here.
Our Advanced Skills Training (AST) gives medical officers the opportunity to enhance clinical practice through 12 months* of focused, specialised training. For more information on AST disciplines available through the Generalist Pathway, please visit the Advanced skills page.
*Surgical AST takes two years to complete.
AST is similar to Registrar training for other disciplines. It is usually undertaken in a provincial hospital and remunerated at PHO level.
In some instances, AST can be undertaken rurally; Indigenous Health AST is often undertaken during rural placement, however, regardless of AST location, a Trainee should be at PHO level unless otherwise negotiated.
After training is complete, you may be offered a Senior Medical Officer (Provisional Fellow) appointment, if employed in a hospital setting. For more detailed information, read the
Rural Generalist Medical Officers Positions Guide
No. There are no contracts associated with quarantined Rural Generalist Intern positions.
Queensland Health Rural Scholarship Scheme (QHRSS) holders are required to complete the prevocational component (first two years) of Rural Generalist Training to ensure junior doctors feel safe and prepared for rural return of service obligations.
No. Only select Queensland hospitals offer training and support towards a career in Rural Generalist Medicine. This allows participating hospitals to offer priority access to additional terms in paediatrics, obstetrics and anaesthetics and additional requirements for the successful attainment of Rural Generalist Medicine Prevocational Certification. Click here for a list of participating hospitals with available intern positions.
Regional Training Organisations (RTOs) are tasked by Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) to deliver general practice registrar training. There are two RTOs in Queensland: Generalist Medical Training (GMT) and General Practice Training Queensland (GPTQ). For doctors already in rural and remote practice, the Remote Vocational Training Scheme (RVTS) can provide distance education and supervision while they continue to provide general medical services to their community.
Applications are open in early March each year. Click here for specific dates and submissions deadlines.
We’d love to answer any questions you may have about the Queensland Rural Generalist Pathway or life as a Rural Generalist.
Please email or call us:
phone: 1800 680 291