General Practice Updates

In a constantly changing environment, we summarise the most important updates for General Practitioners. 

This week’s summary includes updates from:

  • The Department of Health
  • AHPRA
  • AMC
  • ACRRM
  • RACGP
  • Medicare
  • Medical Board of Australia
  • 3GA Programs

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH-

Total Coronavirus Cases – 

There have been a total of 120,043 cases in Australia. There have been 1150 new locally acquired cases and 7 overseas acquired cases in the last 24 hours, with 23,401 current active cases. 

Find more: https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert/coronavirus-covid-19-current-situation-and-case-numbers

Request a review of a DPA or DWS classification – 

The Distribution Working Group (DWG) provides independent advice in response to concerns raised about an area’s DPA classification.

The group assesses applications to review and re-assess an area’s non-DPA status.

Each application must have the support and engagement of the Rural Workforce Agency (RWA) in their state or territory.

Anyone can apply for an assessment. Applicants must work with their RWA to see if existing incentives and support meet their needs. DPA review applications must address the assessment criteria.

Read more: https://www.health.gov.au/initiatives-and-programs/doctorconnect/about-working-in-australia/request-a-review-of-a-dpa-or-dws-classification

AMC-

AMC Tests Cancelled – 

Due to the current and ongoing Covid-19 restrictions throughout Australia, the AMC has found it necessary to cancel the in-person clinical examination dates scheduled at the AMC National Test Centre for the remainder of 2021.

The AMC is continuing to work towards conducting both the online clinical examinations and recommencing in-person examinations in late 2021 to accommodate candidate requests.

Candidates scheduled for the cancelled examinations will be offered alternate examination dates. Communication regarding the rescheduling will be emailed to candidates directly.

Examination dates for 2022 online and NTC examinations will be published to all eligible candidates on Monday, 1 November 2021.

Scheduling for these examination dates will be available through the Candidate Portal on Thursday, 11 November 2021 at 10.00am AESDT.

RACGP-

RACGP PEP–

Applications for PEP are now open

Apply here: https://www.racgp.org.au/racgp-pep-apply-now 

RACGP Exams –

Enrolments for the 2022.1 AKT and KFP exams are now open and will close on October 10 

Apply Here: https://www.racgp.org.au/education/registrars/fracgp-exams/exam-enrolment-instructions/enrol-now 

RACGP Fellowship Reminder –

From January 2022, it will be compulsory for non-VR doctors who don’t have a specialist qualification to complete an approved program – such as PEP, AGPT or RVTS – to be eligible to sit the RACGP Fellowship exams.

MEDICARE –

Summary of Changes – Other Changes –

Item 41904 will be moved from Subgroup 8 – Ear, nose and throat into Subgroup 6 – Cardio-thoracic of Group T8. Under this change item 41904 will be repealed, and item 38428 will be introduced to provide for the service instead. This change does not change the nature of the service nor patent access.

Items 63541 and 63545 from the Health Insurance (Section 3C Diagnostic Imaging Services—Multiparametric MRI of the prostate) Determination 2018 will be incorporated into the DIST. The timing and purpose for item 63545 will also be amended.

Item 47491 from the Health Insurance (Section 3C General Medical Services – Anterior and Posterior Pelvic Ring Disruption) Determination 2021 and items 63541 and 63543 from the Health Insurance (Section 3C Diagnostic Imaging Services – Multiparametric MRI of the prostate) Determination 2018 will be incorporated into the GMST and DIST from 1 November 2021.

Items 35638, 38212, 38727, 38730, 45720 to 45752, 46486, 46498, 46500, 46501, 46503, 46534, 47450, 48958, 49776, 49833 to 49838 and 50224 will be amended to make minor administrative changes which align with the policy intent of the services. This includes removing references to repealed items and correction of typographical errors and specifying services must be assisted (where applicable).

Item 57351 will be repealed.

New items 10995, 10957, 10959, 82001, 82002 and 82003 will be introduced through the Health Insurance Legislation Amendment (Section 3C General Medical Services – Allied Health Case Conference) Determination 2021. These items will enable a Medicare benefit to be paid where allied health practitioners participate in case conferences to manage the care of certain patients.

Items 72814, 73337, 73341, 73343 and 73344 will be amended through the Health Insurance (Section 3C Co-Dependent Pathology Services) Amendment Determination 2021 to align items 72814, 73337, 73341 and 73344 with changes to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) which exclude the need for positive programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) status for access the drug pembrolizumab and amend item 73343 to include genome wide micro-array in addition to fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) testing.

Item 73844 will be amended through the Health Insurance (Diabetes Testing in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Sites) Amendment Determination 2021 to align the service with clinical best-practice. Item 73844 currently provides for the quantitation of urinary microalbumin as determined by urine albumin excretion on a timed overnight urine sample or urine albumin/creatinine ratio (ACR), as determined on a first morning urine sample for patients with diagnosed diabetes.

Under the changes to item 73844, the requirement for the test to be performed on a first morning urine sample and instead require the test be performed on random spot collection will be removed. Item 73844 will also be amended to expand the service to patients at risk of microalbuminuria, in addition to patients with established diabetes.

New HbA1c Point of Care testing items 73812 and 73826 will be introduced through the Health Insurance (Section 3C Pathology Services – HbA1c Point of Care Testing) Determination 2021 and the Health Insurance (Section 3C Midwife and Nurse Practitioner Services) Amendment Determination 2021.

MEDICAL BOARD OF AUSTRALIA –

State Board Applications –

AHPRA is seeking individuals with an ability and interest to contribute to the regulatory work of the state and territory boards of the Medical Board of Australia.

Applications are now sought from registered medical practitioners and community members to fill vacancies on the state and territory boards in the following jurisdictions:

  • Australian Capital Territory – 1 practitioner member
  • South Australia – 3 community members and 4 practitioner members (incl. Chair)
  • Tasmania – 1 community member
  • Victoria – 1 practitioner member (incl. Chair)

The state and territory boards work in partnership with Ahpra to make registration and notification decisions about individual practitioners, based on national policies and standards set by the Medical Board of Australia.

3GA PROGRAM IMPORTANT DATES:

  • AGPT applications are now closed.
  • RVTS applications are now closed.  
  • PEP applications are now open.
  • ACRRM Independent Pathway applications are closed.

DID WE MISS SOMETHING IMPORTANT?

We’re here to help. If there is something we’re missing, please let us know! Our team are available at [email protected] 

DO YOU HAVE QUESTIONS? 

Our team offer General Practitioners assistance with finding jobs and a career pathway, and Medical Facilities to find a new Medical Practitioner. We also help with the full application process with AHPRA, RACGP, ACRRM, Department of Health, Medicare including 19AA & 19AB. If we can help, please contact us at [email protected]

People Medical Consulting are a team of professionals with a passion for guiding those specialising in the Medical industry to find their career pathway and settle into Australia. Working with both Australian trained and Overseas trained professionals, we have extensive experience in Recruitment of General Practitioners and Document Assistance for those requiring support with RACGP, AHPRA, 19AA and 19AB Medicare Exemptions.

Related Articles