The Indigenous General Practice Registrars Network (IGPRN) provides a forum for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander registrars to provide professional and cultural support to one another. This network connects and undertakes exam preparation via two face-to-face workshops each year and an online discussion/study forum. General Practice Education and Training (GPET) assisted the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander registrars in establishing IGPRN in 2008 and then in 2012, General Practice Registrars Australia (GPRA) took on managing the coordination of the network.
IGPRN and the RACGP working together
The National Faculty of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health is committed to increasing the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander GPs as part of its commitment to Close the Gap in health outcomes.
The Faculty has offered the Indigenous Fellowship Excellence Program over 2013-2014 which aims to assist Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander GP registrars in preparing for their RACGP Fellowship exams.
Concurrently, the IGPRN also conducted a workshop dubbed ‘Honey Ants’, designed to offer peer-to-peer support, information on resources and tips and advice from IGPRN members and recent Fellows on how to tackle the FRACGP exam.
One of the principles of the Indigenous Fellowship Excellence Program is that it should not duplicate what is already being offered elsewhere. As a result, the program outline has been restructured to focus on the whole of GP training, not just exam preparation. Topics covered in the program now include: who does what in GP training, combining study, life and work, managing stress and tips and advice from recent successful Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander GP Fellows.
Through regular contact with IGPRN, both organisations provide advice and support to help recruit suitable educators for their programs. Dates are coordinated and set to ensure they do not conflict to allow registrars the best chance of attending both workshops. The RACGP and IGPRN will continue to look for opportunities to enhance the way support is provided to GP registrars and is tailored to the needs of registrars.