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Have your say on the state of general practice


Morgan Liotta


17/04/2024 2:37:48 PM

GPs can take part in the Health of the Nation survey to inform the RACGP’s top-level advocacy and shape the future of general practice.

Young, female GP in hospital corridor
This year’s report focuses on innovation in general practice, and the barriers and enablers to progress.

The RACGP’s Health of the Nation survey is now open, with members able to have their say until 12 May.
 
Results of the nationwide GP survey will inform the annual General Practice: Health of the Nation report, which plays a fundamental role in the college’s advocacy for GPs and their patients.
 
Now in its eighth year, Health of the Nation is Australia’s only annual study providing insight into the state of general practice. Each year, it receives significant attention from Australian politicians and media, and the findings, together with RACGP advocacy, influence health policy and funding for general practice.
 
The RACGP’s running advocacy helped to secure the largest investment in general practice care in decades – more than $5.7 billion – in last year’s Federal Budget.
 
But RACGP President Dr Nicole Higgins previously said this was a first step or ‘downpayment’ and that more is needed.
 
With the 2024 survey now live, Dr Higgins is calling on members to provide their insights to help strengthen general practice.
 
‘The Health of the Nation report arms us with a voice to government,’ she told newsGP.
 
‘It is often quoted by the Health Minister, other MPs and media, and tells the story of what is happening in general practice. The report supports our advocacy – which directly influences health policy and funding.
 
‘I’m sure that many of our members, just like me, love being a GP but know things need to change – be it funding, red tape and regulations, or work–life balance.
 
‘Your contribution to the survey will help shape our advocacy, and what we call for in the next Federal Budget, as well as state and territory budgets, and health policy reviews and inquiries.’
 
In its 2024–25 pre-Budget submission, the college is calling for funding in line with Strengthening Medicare Taskforce recommendations and building the GP workforce, including:

  • ensuring enough GPs for the future with attraction and retention incentive plans, and targeted support for GPs in training
  • increasing access to primary care through GP-led multidisciplinary care teams, coordination of care, and funding for longer consultations, including mental health, as well as funded annual child health checks
  • equitable health outcomes through research-informed preventive health, including practice-based research networks and health guidelines.
This year’s Health of the Nation report focuses on innovation in general practice, and the barriers and enablers to progress.
 
GPs previously reported managing workload/burnout, remuneration, fragmented care, outdated and inadequate Medicare rebates, regulatory and compliance burdens, and keeping up with digital advances among the top barriers to progress and job satisfaction.
 
Dr Higgins said this year’s survey results will help amplify GPs’ voices from the frontline and paint a picture of the top challenges they currently face, giving leverage to the RACGP’s advocacy asks to government and policymakers.
 
‘I know we’re all super busy, but I urge all members to please give around 10 minutes of your time to complete the survey,’ she said.
 
‘Help us shape the future of general practice for the better.’
 
The 2024 Health of the Nation survey is open until 11.59 pm (AEST) Sunday 12 May, is completely anonymous and conducted by external market research agency, The Navigators. It takes around 12 minutes to complete and progress can be paused, with answers saved at any point to finish later.
 
Members who complete the survey have the chance to win a 12-month RACGP membership for 2024–25, as well as gain access to a new reflective CPD activity from late April by logging in to gplearning once they complete the survey.
 
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advocacy Federal Budget general practice reform GP survey health of the nation


newsGP weekly poll Which of the below incentive amounts (paid annually) would be sufficient to encourage you to provide eight consultations and two care plans to a residential aged care patient per year?
 
0%
 
1%
 
4%
 
4%
 
34%
 
54%
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newsGP weekly poll Which of the below incentive amounts (paid annually) would be sufficient to encourage you to provide eight consultations and two care plans to a residential aged care patient per year?

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