Medical Students Oppose Budget Increase of Commonwealth Supported Places
30 March 2022
The Australian Medical Students’ Association (AMSA) opposes the Federal Budget announcement of introducing 80 new medical Commonwealth Supported Places (CSPs) at rural campuses.
“What this announcement represents is the Government taking the easy way out. It is a missed opportunity of CSP redistribution, whereby they could have taken city-based places and provided them to rural medical schools” highlighted AMSA President, Ms Jasmine Davis.
AMSA’s position is that no increases in medical school places should occur unless guided by evidence-based workforce modelling. Instead, should the Government want to increase rural training opportunities, a redistribution model is preferred. This involves CSPs from universities that fail to contribute to the rural workforce having their places redistributed to universities that are successful in bolstering the rural workforce.
“We have seen a rapid increase in the number of medical schools in Australia which is likely to cause an oversupply of doctors by at least 4,494 by 2030, placing a significant bottleneck on the capacity of Australian medical graduates to gain access to the health workforce,” claimed Mr Guy Jeffery, AMSA Vice President.
Mr Jeffery said: “Increasing medical student numbers has been utilised as a political tool in almost every Budget. Doing this in the absence of providing postgraduate training pathways in rural and remote areas is ineffective, and a misguided use of taxpayer money.”
This announcement is in addition to the lack of investment provided in the Federal Budget to the Junior Doctor Training Program (JDTP), an initiative historically relied upon to ensure all medical graduates receive internships, the funding of which will expire at the end of 2022.
Ms Davis said: “AMSA is extremely concerned about the possibility that graduating medical students will be left without an internship, especially without the JDTP. Funding medical school places, without a plan for students to complete an internship and specialty training, is short-sighted and extremely irresponsible.”
AMSA is the peak representative body for Australia’s 17,000 medical students. AMSA continues to call on the Government to take a whole pipeline approach to the medical workforce as outlined in the National Medical Workforce Strategy (2021-2031)
Jasmine Davis, AMSA President
0428 167 911
Katya Gvozdenko, Public Relations Officer
0490 099 561