“Communities of practice are groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly.” Lave and Wegner 1991
The last six months have been busy in the Practice Support portfolio. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 restrictions and lockdown, the supervisor residential program in October and November was transitioned to a one-day virtual workshop. Close to 80 supervisors attended each workshop which included a lunch time panel with RACGP, ACRRM and DOH to provide supervisors with a chance to ask questions about the transition. The first of the Cultural Safety workshops was also delivered during this workshop. Our last workshop for the year and the metropolitan regional meetings were in early December.
We are excited that the Cultural Awareness module is now available on EVe for all supervisors and will be a PD requirement for 2022. The new PD requirements for 2022 will be communicated to practices and supervisors in December. We are hoping to return to some face to face activities in 2022 such as the regional meetings and practice manager workshops.
We have approximately seven newly accredited practices across the region that will take part in the new practice mentoring program for 2022. The first structured meeting for mentees and mentors took place in November in response to feedback from the 2021 program. New practices will also have a new practice orientation prior to the commencement of their registrars.
The practice support feedback program will be rolling out next year, in a stepped manner to provide feedback and support to practices. The aim of this program is to provide practices with feedback and work together with them by optimising the learning environment to enhance the practice and learner training experience.
Dr Niroshe Amarasekera
Practice Support and Development Coordinator
With the establishment of the Practice Support and Development (PS&D) team, EV has moved to clarify the roles of accreditation and this new portfolio. The Accreditation team is responsible for all processes in the accreditation and re-accreditation of EV training practices and supervisors. In addition to the site or remote accreditation visits, the medical educators also deliver the Foundation Program of modules and workshops.
The Accreditation Panel is also reviewing its Terms of Reference to better streamline decisions on the accreditation and re-accreditation of practices and supervisors in the EV training region. The Accreditation Panel will determine whether the practices and supervisors meet the vocational training standards and EV requirements for accreditation/re-accreditation and the placement of EV registrars.
The PS&D team manage the identification of potential training practices and support practices in preparing for accreditation/re-accreditation. The team also manage the mentor program for new supervisors and practice managers. Where practices or supervisors are experiencing difficulty in meeting or maintaining the vocational training standards for a training practice, the PS&D team provide individualised support.
Special thanks to all members of both teams who have been integral in achieving the outcomes intended in this change. The result has been clearer purpose and decision-making with greater support for EV training practices.
Professor Neil Spike AM,
Director of Medical Education and Training
Supervisor Liaison Officer Report
Metropolitan SLO report
In October and November the virtual GPS residential workshops were well attended. The program’s Q&A panel had representatives from DOH, RACGP and ACRRM. During the Q&A some supervisors expressed their disappointment that EV will not carry on after January 2023. A reminder that this was a DOH decision, not a GP College decision, although ACRRM has always been keen to bring all its trainees “in-house” and not use RTOs. RACGP was open to some/all RTOs continuing but DOH requested a “new beginning with an emphasis on more rural trainees staying rurally” (which would be great if achievable). DOH has promised that GP supervisor and practice funding will be nationally consistent, with no supervisor or practice having their funding reduced. The funding model will include a rural loading. GPSA (and GPRA) will continue to be funded for at least 3 years from December 2022. For more on the RACGP Profession-led Community-based Training visit the RACGP website.
At the last EV Regional Interest Advisory Group (RIAG) meeting it was reported that at several recent RTO events (MCCC and EVGPT) some registrars spoke about negative comments made by their supervisors. The supervisors were recommending the registrars seek employment in other parts of medicine and that there was “no money in General Practice”. This is disappointing. I refer you to RACGP President, Dr Karen Price’s recent comments re co-payments for those patients who can afford it and the latest GPSA newsletter and Chairs report “Value your worth”. The last few years have been difficult in General Practice with the Medicare freeze and Covid-19, but General Practice is a great career and I encourage you to remain positive, especially with medical students and registrars who are the future of General Practice.
Dr Gerard Connors
Accreditation, Metropolitan SLO
Rural SLO report
The transition to college community-based training is slowly progressing. Following the recent GPSA meeting DOH has indicated that there will be a central based, nationally consistent payment model for all participants. This model will have stronger support for rural and remote, with flexible streams where required and include rural loadings. All payments will be paid by the Commonwealth, after being signed off by the relevant GP college. In my opinion, the “single employer model” won’t happen, but there will be a portable entitlements pool to address the issue of maternity and other accrued leave.
I agree with Gerard, we have all been through a very challenging time for General Practice with the rebate freeze, challenges of Covid-19 and the ongoing undervaluing of General Practice by governments. I encourage you to use your voice and communicate your suggested solutions to people who are able to influence change. Please also be mindful of the role you play with medical students, junior doctors and registrars, they are the future and need our encouragement!
Dr Peter Stevens