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Congratulations and Thank You… YOU are valued!

54 GP Supervisors were recognised for the service they have provided to their respective communities on top of the three prestigious Australia Day awards bestowed on individuals from the GP supervisor community for Drs Marjorie Cross (OAM), Ian Fraser (OAM), and Morton Rawlin (AM). Dr Jack Maguire was also recognised as Townsville’s 2018 Citizen of the year.

Recognition for the work we do within our communities whether personal, professional, workplace or industry, while not essential, are signpost moments which cause pause and reflection on what is important. Indeed, many things we have reason to be proud of will never be formally recognised, but our contributions to our communities have a lasting benefit; a legacy effect.

For GP supervisors Recognition, Respect and Reward have been three key ingredients stakeholders have identified as being important. With so many of our community being recognised this year it is important to consider how we each recognise those in our own teams for the work that they do and the contributions they make to our communities and importantly as a team how we signpost to our own teams that they are valued.

As we progress through a busy February with a new cohort of registrars and training terms, you will be aware of how much of a team effort getting the next generation of family practitioners is.  Judging by the number of calls we receive at this time of year in preparation for end of term final payments and new contracts for the term about to commence in February, the constant cycle of renewal in our practices continues.

Not only do new GP trainees bring with them fresh ideas and the introduction of interesting new personalities to the practice they sometimes shine a light of workplace culture; positive or challenging.

GP Supervisors Australia recently met with Supervisors in Tasmania to look at developing intentional workplace cultures around performance management, and building social capital within their practices to support sometimes challenging conversations. What the conversation highlighted was that for the most part GP registrars are receptive to feedback and this is both acknowledged and respected by supervisors. Most supervisors had experience with a challenging learner at some stage throughout their careers. They were the exception, not the rule, but the impact of the experience was remarkable.

As practice leaders, now is the time that we set the scene for the very best outcomes in GP training, with appropriate employment agreements (available for download here), well structured orientation programs (available for download here) and investment in on-boarding the newest member of our teams.

For GPSA this year, there will be a focus on professionalism to mirror federal signals that this is indeed a priority area for the Australian Government and reflected in the communities expectation that The Australian GP Community deliver the very best in health care to our communities.

Based on meetings with the colleges, RTOs and Department of Health officials, the transition to a college lead GP training environment will also bring with it a focus on expanding AGPT supports for International Medical Graduates with supervision requirements throughout Australia. GP Supervisors are excited by the opportunity this presents to achieve even more with the comprehensive AGPT network and associated resources.

2018 will be a negotiation year for the National Terms and Conditions for the Employment of Registrars (NTCER). To this end we will be seeking your feedback on changes you would like to see made in the 2019-20 Agreement. Our door is always open to new ideas.

Finally, GPSA continue to recommend training practices avail of the risk management mechanisms included within the NTCER in its current format:

Remember the NTCER is agreed as fair and reasonable by both GPSA and GPRA and negotiations span almost a full year. The negotiation has therefore already been done by the time a registrar reaches your practice.

May your new training term progress smoothly.

Dr Steve Holmes