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Your say: bush doctor boost

Federal Health Minister Tanya Plibersek says the Government will spend $8 million to help tackle a shortage of doctors in the bush. She says the funding package will increase the number of medical internships in rural areas. We asked what the boost would mean to you.


  1. I agree, we don't need more private hospitals. However it would be good to have more doctors and medical facilities in the bush. It would encourage more old age pensioners to relocate into country areas and boost the economy in those areas. If more retired people left the cities there would be more housing available in the cities for other people including the poor.
  2. Good news! But more should be spent... I have lived in our town for over 30 years... in our town you now have to make an appointment up to 4 weeks in advance... doctors surgeries aren't taking new patients, so if you are new to town you don't have a doctor... if you are sick you are told to go to the out-patients / emergency section of the hospital and wait sometimes hours to be seen depending on the severity of your illness/pain... we have a population over 14000 and I'm guessing about 9 doctors... when I tell people in Perth about the situation they are shocked... our local MLA is a doctor and has been trying to get more doctors to town... we are a beautiful, coastal town with an aging population (popular retirement town), plus alot of young families, yet we somehow can't get more doctors to live here... I do feel for the medical staff... we have only one hospital, it is a public hospital which is in need of upgrading... and that's just one rural town in this big country...
  3. Maybe a more simple scheme would be to tie Australian medical graduates to rural and regional areas for a specified time. The provision of a Medicare provider number which is linked to a specific area would be effective.
  4. Why not part-fund scholarships for more Australian students to train to be doctors, & increase intake in the courses? Why have subsequent governments allowed the industry to create an artificial shortage of doctors by limiting intake in the courses?
  5. I hope this means these doctors will be supported by a better health infrastructure in rural areas. Without appropriate support such as nurses and other health care workers, (which there is a major shortage of as well) these doctors will leave as quickly as they arrived. Throwing money at part of the problem will not provide the quick fix the government is after and is just a waste of tax payers hard earned cash.
  6. What about training our own university students in rural clinical schools? We need specialist rural clinical schools to educate our rural students in, not to just rely on importing overseas trained graduates.