Doctors in Demand
We are working to actively recruit doctors and also retain our valuable GP workforce. These activities include participation in recruitment campaigns with medical recruitment agencies and in medical industry events. Like many other health services we recognise there is a need for more rural doctors and this is an ongoing priority. Unfortunately, this shortage of doctors and other health professionals is occurring across Australia, which makes the task of recruitment the more difficult. We do have locum GPs to cover the gaps from time to time.
NCN Health also supports a number of initiatives to grow future workforce, including partnering with Melbourne University to support medical students and working with the Victorian Rural Generalist Program (VRGP) to support medical interns.
In 2022 we increased the number of students and interns. The VRGP program is State wide and NCN Health has a key role in developing career pathways for rural generalists to stay in rural and regional areas. We collaborate with Murray City Country Coast (MCCC) registrar program and are actively recruiting for 2023. We are also commencing a process for medical observers which will support overseas trained doctors wishing to transition into practice in Australia.
These programs are vital in not only growing the future workforce, but demonstrating to students the excellent work and lifestyle opportunities in regional and rural health.
Due to the shortage of GPs, we recognise that there is often a wait to get an appointment. This is compounded over the winter months with seasonal illness and the ongoing effects of Covid-19. If you cannot wait for your appointment or the matter is urgent, there are a number of online and over the phone telehealth options available.
You can talk to a GP over the phone or online for a variety of services, these include; general medical consultations, prescriptions, medical certificates, referrals for things such as x-rays, ultrasounds, specialists and allied health appointments.
There are also dedicated child and maternal health lines and a general health care advice line called Nurse on Call that are free of charge.
We have put together a telehealth services guide that you can find here. There is also the ‘Choose Well, Feel Better’ initiative which provides free tools to help people make better healthcare choices.
If you urgently need health care, you can attend one of our urgent care centres, GV Health Emergency Department or for emergencies always call 000.
We understand that difficulty obtaining a timely appointment can be very frustrating for members of our community, especially during times of illness, however, we are doing everything we can to improve the situation both in the short term and for the future.
We would like to acknowledge the dedication of all our GPs across NCN Health who consistently work to prioritise the health and wellbeing of their patients.