Advanced Skills Training Posts Rural Generalists and General Practitioners Program (AST Program)

Each year, the AST program supports 15 advanced skills posts for general practitioner (GP) registrars, rural generalist (RG) registrars and fellowed RGs or GPs. Learn about the program, who is eligible, and how to participate.

About the program

We are funding the new Advanced Skills Training (AST) Program to support 15 training posts every year, including

  • 2 posts in each state.
  • 3 posts in the Northern Territory.

The program provides funds to support the costs of AST posts for:

  • Rural Generalist (RG) registrars
  • General Practitioner (GP) registrars
  • Fellowed RGs and GPs.

This will improve their procedural, non-procedural and emergency medicine skills, relevant to their location and community need. 

The program contributes toward the total cost of participant employment and training. It relies on the health setting (state and territory government or local hospital network) to cover the remaining cost.

Posts under the program will include all AST disciplines supported under the GP College curriculums. This includes procedural areas such as, but not limited to:

  • obstetrics
  • anaesthetics
  • surgery
  • emergency care

Posts can also include non-procedural areas such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health, mental health, palliative care, and paediatrics. 

Training posts should be in Modified Monash Model (MMM) 2-7 locations. The training administrator can consider support for training posts in MM1 locations where training is not available in a rural location. The advanced skill will fill a service delivery gap in an identified community.


The AST Program aims to: 

  • support RG and GP registrars and fellowed RGs and GPs in regional, rural and remote Australia to attain advanced skills
  • increase the amount of highly skilled RGs and GPs in rural and remote communities that can supervise other doctors to gain specialist skills 
  • create a robust training network 
  • ensure communities can access RGs and GPs with the right skills in the right place when they need them.

Who we work with

The AST Program is a collaborative approach to expanding advanced skills training requiring engagement and participation between:

  • the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care
  • GP Colleges
  • State and Northern Territory health departments 
  • National Rural Generalist Pathway Coordination Units 
  • Local Health Networks
  • Public health settings
  • RG/GP registrars; and 
  • fellowed RGs and GPs.

The Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) will act as the Administrator of the AST Program.


To be eligible, participants must be either:

  • enrolled in a GP College fellowship training pathway; or 
  • a fellowed RG or GP applying to complete advanced skills training approved by a GP College.

All AST training posts must be accredited and wherever possible should meet the accreditation requirements of both GP Colleges. 

Posts funded under the program must be new training posts. 

Posts cannot have received funding by another organisation for more than 12 months in the last 3 years.

How to participate

To participate in the AST Program, please liaise with the relevant GP College, National Rural Generalist Pathway Coordination Unit or specific healthcare facility.  

You can also reach out to NRGP Support for information.

Program guidelines


Date last updated:

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