AGPT Rural Pathway
Learn general practice via the AGPT Rural Pathway at GPTQ
Training with GPTQ via the Rural Pathway provides the unique experience of living and working in country towns like Goondiwindi and small communities like Blackbutt.
Rural Queensland offers an exciting opportunity to learn general practice. The Rural Pathway affects where you can train, but it equips you with the skills and education to practise anywhere in Australia once you graduate. In fact, many doctors claim working in rural practice will make you a better all-round GP. And the good news is, it’s often easier to secure a training place on the Rural Pathway than the general one.
I really enjoy rural people. I enjoy the frankness, the openness, the genuineness, the lack of pretension. And mostly, they’re very grateful for everything you’re doing.Dr Patricia Stuart, GPTQ Medical Educator
What is the AGPT Rural Pathway?
The Rural Pathway provides training and experience in general practice medicine across regional, rural and remote locations. Such locations often have a high demand for GPs and the Australian Government actively encourages registrars to pursue this pathway. There are good incentives for rural GPs.
The Rural Pathway enables you to complete a GP fellowship through either or both GP colleges. This is the qualification required to practise independently as a GP in Australia. You have the option of completing a three- or four-year fellowship, with the latter providing more advanced rural training.
See training options for an overview of AGPT’s program.
Our Rural Pathway educators
GPTQ has a team of experienced medical educators who are passionate about and dedicated to rural medicine. These people include:
- Dr Patricia Stuart
- Dr Mike Hurley
- Dr Ewen McPhee
- Dr Rebecca Lock
- Dr Trish Rathie
- Dr Kathy Kirkpatrick
Many of our metro-based educators also have experience in rural medicine. We also have an inspired team of GP supervisors with practices in regional Queensland. They are exceptional doctors and keen to welcome registrars into their practices.
AGPT categorises locations according to their remoteness, using the Australian Standard Geographical Classification – Remoteness Area (ASGC-RA). Registrars on the Rural Pathway can’t train in major cities (RA1) after the first year of hospital or core clinical training. They can train in these areas:
- Inner regional Australia (RA2)
- Outer regional Australia (RA3)
- Remote Australia (RA4)
- Very remote Australia (RA5)
Registrars completing ACRRM and RACGP + FARGP should research RA2-5 Practices on MyPLACEMENT to ensure they meet Fellowship requirements e.g. some RA 2-5 training posts are not accredited for ACRRM or FARGP.
Discover Darling Downs and West Moreton
Darling Downs and West Moreton is a district in southeast Queensland. This region is one of the Australian Government’s primary healthcare networks and has been identified as a priority area for improving the population’s health.
You have the opportunity to contribute to improving the health of the local community. The rates of cancer and diabetes are higher than average in Darling Downs and West Moreton. Risk factors are also high, including two-thirds of people having an unhealthy weight and almost one in five people smoking daily. The Indigenous population makes up a significant proportion of the community.
There are more than half a million Australians living in this region. Training practice locations include Allora, Blackbutt, Chinchilla, Clifton, Crows Nest, Dalby, Goondiwindi, Inglewood, Kingaroy, Millmerran, Morgan, Oakey, Pittsworth, Stanthorpe, Warwick and Wondai. You can learn more about our towns – including the population size, schools, parks and local activities – by browsing our training region.
Benefits of choosing the Rural Pathway
Here are some of the reasons to go rural:
- Rural medicine provides a diversity of patient presentations, teaches you self-sufficiency and builds your professional network.
- Your training period offers the opportunity to experience country life, from the fun and support of a small community to the joys of cheap rent.
- Registrars are offered financial support for rural and remote placements.
- You still have access to some of our most popular locations, such as Bribie Island and Stradbroke Island.
Explainer: What’s the difference between the Rural Pathway and the General Pathway?
Specialised training options
During your training on the Rural Pathway, you will also be able to obtain extended skills and advanced specialist training in areas of medicine that are of particular interest to you. Find out more about specialised training. We also support and encourage registrars to pursue their academic interests with an academic post.
What is it like to work in rural medicine?
Hear our registrars and supervisors talk about working in rural and remote locations.
Queensland Health Rural Generalist doctors
The term ‘Rural Generalist’ refers to doctors who are on a specific state government training program. The Queensland Health Rural Generalist program starts earlier than registrar training, with medical students in their final year of university being eligible to apply.
In Queensland, the Rural Generalist Pathway – not to be confused with the ‘Rural Pathway‘ – supports doctors interested in working in rural medicine and training towards an advanced skill to deliver medical services to rural and remote communities. Doctors on the Queensland Health Rural Generalist Pathway are required to train towards GP fellowship of ACRRM and/or RACGP plus FARGP by enrolling in the AGPT program. GPTQ welcomes and supports Rural Generalist trainees into our Rural Pathway cohort. Medical students interested in this program should visit Queensland Health Rural Generalist for further information.
If you’re an overseas doctor and passionate about rural health, you can reduce the length of your 10-year moratorium by undertaking placements in more remote locations. The potential reductions are:
- ASGC-RA 2 – reduced to 9 years
- ASGC-RA 3 – reduced to 7 years
- ASGC-RA 4 – reduced to 6 years
- ASGC-RA 5 – reduced to 5 years