Specialist Training Program

The Specialist Training Program supports training positions in regional, rural and remote areas, and in private facilities. This helps to improve the skills and distribution of the specialist workforce by giving participants experience of a broader range of healthcare settings.

About the program

The Specialist Training Program helps cover the salaries of trainee specialists in training positions outside the traditional metropolitan teaching hospitals.

It gives participants experience of a broader range of healthcare settings, including:

  • private hospitals
  • specialist rooms
  • clinics and day surgeries
  • Aboriginal Medical Services
  • non-clinical settings.

The program supports training posts through specialist medical colleges, including:

  • 920 training places
  • an additional 100 training posts through the Integrated Rural Training Pipeline
  • supervisor and trainee positions, as well as education and infrastructure, under the Tasmanian Project. 

Aims of the program

The Specialist Training Program aims to:

  • improve the specialist workforce by providing quality training posts in different settings to broaden the participants’ experiences
  • increase the number of specialists working in regional, rural and remote areas.

How the program works

To help cover the annual salary of trainee specialists, we provide colleges with:

  • $105,000 per full-time equivalent position
  • an additional $25,000 Rural Support Loading allowance for training positions in regional, rural and remote areas
  • a Private Infrastructure and Clinical Supervision allowance of $30,000 for training positions in a private sector setting.

Who delivers the training

Training must take place in a facility accredited by one of the 13 specialist medical colleges that have a funding agreement with us.

These colleges set professional standards, accredit training settings and coordinate education and training of future college fellows.

The funded colleges are:

Specialist Training Program operational framework

The operational framework outlines the aims, objectives, outcome parameters and governance of the Specialist Training Program, as well as updated information on funding activities and earlier application rounds.

COVID-19 update

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant disruption to the health workforce. Some trainees might need to be redeployed to areas outside the usual scope of practice.

We understand the need for flexibility, and Specialist Training Program funding will continue.

We ask colleges to keep us up to date with any action they are taking in relation to the pandemic.  


Specialist training places

Trainees must complete at least half of their specialist training in either:

Integrated Rural Training Pipeline

Under the Integrated Rural Training Pipeline, specialist trainees:

  • must show a commitment to working in a rural area
  • must complete at least two-thirds of their fellowship training (2 years) in a rural area
  • may complete metropolitan rotations, to meet college education and accreditation standards.

Tasmanian project

Funding under the Tasmanian Project supports the training and retention of specialist doctors in the Tasmanian public health system.

Applying for a new training post under the STP

The next reserve list process will:

  • open at 9am, Monday 6 March 2023, Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEDT), for 4-weeks
  • close at 5pm Friday 31 March 2023 (AEDT).

STP and IRTP Reserve List Process Portal will go live on 6 March 2023.

This process will be used to expand college reserve lists available under the program, and targets rural and private health settings.

These specialist medical colleges are seeking applications:

  • Australasian College of Dermatologists (ACD)
  • Australasian College of Sport and Exercise Physicians (ACSEP)
  • Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists (ANZCA)
  • College of Intensive Care Medicine of Australia and New Zealand (CICM)
  • Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators (RACMA)
  • Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS)
  • Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO)
  • Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG)
  • Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP)
  • Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists (RANZCR)
  • Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia (RCPA).

At the end of the 4-week application period, the appropriate specialist college and relevant jurisdiction will assess the application for suitability for STP funding.

If the specialist medical college and jurisdiction deem an application suitable, it will be placed on a reserve list managed by the medical college. Being placed on a reserve list is not an offer of funding under the program.

If your post is not approved through the reserve list post process, you can seek feedback from the specific college

Decisions are final and there is no appeal process.

If you wish to participate in the 2023 reserve list process, please complete the following steps:

  1. Register an account on the Account Registration – 2023 STP Reserve List Process page. Once your account registration is submitted an email will be sent with a password setup from no-reply@iapply.com.au

    Please make sure you check your spam/junk folders if your email hasn’t arrived within 30 minutes after submission. If you don’t receive your password after 1 hour after submission, please contact MSTS@health.gov.au

  2. Use your log on details (email and password created) to register your Application – 2023 STP Reserve List Process to complete this process. On successful submission of an application, you will be emailed a receipt.

Please check your spam/junk folders if your email hasn’t arrived within 30 minutes after submission from no-reply@iapply.com.au

Please contact MSTS@health.gov.au if you have further questions about the reserve list process.


Specialist Training Program contact

Contact us for information about the Specialist Training Program.
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