Medical Training Review Panel: thirteenth report

Foreword

Page last updated: April 2010

The Hon Nicola Roxon MP
Minister for Health and Ageing
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Dear Minister
In accordance with the requirements of subsection 3GC(4) of the Health Insurance Act 1973, I am pleased to submit to you the thirteenth report of the Medical Training Review Panel.

The report describes the activities of the Panel and reports on medical training in Australia. It reports on the number of trainees in undergraduate, postgraduate and vocational training programs in the last year and on new college fellows. For the first time the report also presents information on the total number of college fellows and includes a dedicated chapter on those overseas trained doctors applying to work and working in Australia.

It also presents a very clear picture of the substantial increases in medical training that have happened in recent years and of the challenges of meeting the needs of an increasing number of medical students, both in terms of clinical training in their undergraduate years and prevocational training. In turn, medical colleges are also under increasing pressures to train the increasing number of specialists required to meet the needs of Australians into the future. These pressures reinforce the need for us to be able to better quantify current training activity, determine where there is capacity in the system and develop more innovative ways to undertake training, through changes to curricula, more use of training settings other than hospitals and the use of new technologies, such as simulated learning.

A comprehensive review of the functions and the operations of the MTRP was finalised recently. This acknowledged the key role that the MTRP has established in the collection and reporting of authorative data on medical education and training through the MTRP reports. As recommended, it has further been agreed that the role of the MTRP should continue and that its functions in relation to the production of the report and the collation and analysis of data on medical education and training be further expanded.

The Panel, as you know, is constituted of the key stakeholders in medical workforce training, each bringing different insights into the way medical education and training is being currently undertaken, the strains upon the system and how these might be addressed. As a group, the
Panel is keenly aware of the challenges of ensuring that we have the systems in place into the future to provide medical students, junior doctors and specialist trainees with clinical training opportunities that best equip them to meet the needs of the Australian community into the future. I look forward to working with the Panel over the coming year to consider these issues and provide the evidence that can best address Australia’s training needs into the future.

Yours sincerely

Kerry Flanagan

Chair
Medical Training Review Panel

12 April 2010

Medical Training Review Panel
GPO Box 9848, Canberra ACT 2601
Telephone: (02) 6289 3907Fax: (02) 6289 8600