Building on the previous five Distribution Working Group (DWG) meetings, the November 2018 meeting was chaired by the Chief Medical Officer, Professor Brendan Murphy.
Agenda Items – 16 November 2018 meeting
Topics discussed during the previous DWG meeting in September 2018 included:
- update on the District of Workforce Shortage system;
- update on the Modified Monash Model (MMM) classification system; and
- the future of the DWG.
District of Workforce Shortage system update
Members were advised that the Department is in the process of preparing advice to Minister based on the recommendations that were developed by the DWG at the September 2018 meeting.
Members discussed the expected timeframe for the implementation of the DWS update.
Members reviewed the preliminary update of the MMM compared to the current 2015 model.
Members reviewed a list of islands that will be affected by the MMM update and discussed whether difficulties of access should affect their classification. The Department provided members with a list of localities that will change classification with the MMM update.
Members endorsed the update of the MMM and noted that the Department will commence the process shortly.
The future of the DWG
The Department advised Members that when the DWG was established it was agreed that it would be in existence until the end of 2018, but that this timeframe could be extended if there was a need for the group to continue.
Members agreed that there was a need for the DWG in the future and discussed what issues they would expect to provide advice on.
Formal agreement to continue the DWG will be sought from Ministers and this will include a review of the governance arrangements of the group.
Members agreed to attend ad hoc meetings as required by the Department and Ministers.
Distribution Working Group Membership
The Distribution Working Group membership includes a number of peak bodies representing the rural health workforce and the National Rural Health Commissioner.
Members in attendance for the 16 November 2018 meeting were:
- National Rural Health Commissioner
- Monash University, School of Rural Health
- University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research
- Australian Antarctic Division
- National Rural Health Alliance
- Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
- Rural Health Workforce Australia
- University of Queensland, Rural Clinical School
- Australian Indigenous Doctors Association
- University of Newcastle, Department of Rural Health
- Rural Workforce Agency Victoria