GP Supervisors Small Rural Communities

Supervising GP registrars – who does and doesn’t participate and why?

General Practice Training Tasmania (GPTT) in partnership with General Practice Supervisors Australia (GPSA) and Monash University invited 25 GPs to participate in a study designed to better understand the reasons why general practitioners (GPs) do or don’t supervise GP Registrars in rural areas of Tasmania and why.

This study is the first systematic analysis of GPs participating in registrar supervision and what underpins their decision to participate.

This project will help to understand Tasmania’s current and future GP supervisor workforce training support needs locally and nationally to ensure there are enough GP Supervisors to meet training demand within the AGPT program into the future.

We had an overwhelmingly positive response from Tasmanian GPs about their experiences supervising GP registrars. Apart from what we have found from the MABEL data, GPs are telling us much more about supervision within the context of rural general practice, how much they value registrars, and some of the challenges at a community, personal and practice level for enabling positive supervision.

The strong message is that GP registrars are a very positive group to have around in the practice, and rural GPs value the additional workforce they bring to the practice.

Rural GP Supervisors identified the increased capacity realized with GP registrars helped to deliver additional services and support to rural patients critical to increasing primary care access in communities with limited health services.

GP supervisors interviewed also identified the chance to teach (building the next generation) and share learning about general practice in rural communities as real strengths of participating in the AGPT program.

This project is now complete. Download the final communique here. Summary findings can be downloaded here. The project final report can be downloaded here. The research published as a result of this project is found here and here.

Update – September 2020: Another article has been published from this project in BMC Health Services Research. This article focuses on the experiences of GP Supervisors in small rural communities and suggests that to increase opportunities for Registrars in rural communities there needs to be:

  • Increased supervision capacity
  • Assurance of continuity of supply of registrars
  • Policies and systems that can be adapted to the rural general practice.

Download article

Further information:

Michael Bentley, GPTT Project Lead, michael.bentley@gptt.com.au

GPSA admin@gpsupervisorsaustralia.org.au or 03 5440 9077

This research project is supported by the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners with funding from the Australian Government under the Australian General Practice Training Program.

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General Practice Training Tasmania (GPTT) in partnership with General Practice Supervisors Australia (GPSA) and Monash University invited 25 GPs to participate in a study designed to better understand the reasons why general practitioners (GPs) do or don’t supervise GP Registrars in rural areas of Tasmania and why.

Download article

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