Funding boost for First Nations medical specialist training

2 minute read

The government’s $900k investment in the AIDA’s support program will help combat workforce shortages.

The federal government has pledged an additional $900,000 for the Australian Indigenous Doctors Association to boost specialist training for First Nations doctors.

The funding was provided through the Specialist Trainee Support Program, a collaborative initiative led by the AIDA with all 13 non-GP specialist colleges.

The program centres cultural safety in college-led specialist training and provides tailored individual support for current and prospective trainees, with the aim of increasing the numbers of First Nations doctors in undersupplied specialties and rural and regional areas.

According to Assistant Minister for Indigenous Australians Malarndirri McCarthy, the program had already proven to be successful in supporting more First Nations doctors to undertake specialist training.

“Through the STSP, 100% of doctors coached were successful applicants in their specialist training field of choice; and as of March this year, all the colleges involved had retained 100% of their First Nations trainees, fulfilling a key objective of the program since its inception,” Minister McCarthy said.

“The STSP continues to go from strength to strength and is making a real on-the-ground difference in providing specialist care for Indigenous Australians.

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“Its work promotes a health system that is culturally safe, reflective of needs and inclusive of the cultural values of First Nations people, with the expectation this will improve the health and life outcomes across communities.”

Currently, more than 40 doctors and medical students have received 200 hours of training through the program, according to the announcement.

This training included performance coaching, advocacy and cultural support, as well as facilitated group meetings where participants could share their experiences in a culturally safe space.

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