Practice Experience Program Specialist – Requirements for Fellowship Policy


Policy

1. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to describe the principles and requirements for Participants of the Practice Experience Program Specialist (PEP SP) to be admitted to Fellowship of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (FRACGP).

2. Scope

2.1 This policy applies to:

    1. PEP SP Participants, and

    2. RACGP Staff.

2.2 This policy is to be read in conjunction with the PEP SP Fellowship Exams Policy, and the PEP SP Participant Handbook – Partially Comparable Stream or the PEP SP Handbook – Substantially Comparable Stream.

2.3 This policy will come into effect as of 01 July 2024.

3. General principles

The principles by which the RACGP admits PEP SP Participants to Fellowship are:

3.1 ensuring Fellows are competent for unsupervised Comprehensive Australian General Practice,

3.2 upholding public health and safety, and

3.3 maintaining the good reputation of the general practice profession.

4. Requirements for Fellowship

4.1 Experience requirements

All Participants must:

    1. under Supervision, complete a minimum of six calendar months (Full-Time Equivalence [FTE]) of Comprehensive Australian General Practice while on the program.

    2. maintain supervisory requirements until the point of admission to Fellowship.

    3. complete basic life support (BLS) training in the 12 months prior to applying for admission to Fellowship as per the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guide.

    4. complete advanced life support (ALS) training within four years prior to applying for admission to Fellowship as per the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guide.

4.2 Education requirements

    1. Partially Comparable Participants must meet all education requirements as per the PEP SP Participant Handbook – Partially Comparable Stream.

    2. Substantially Comparable Participants must meet all education requirements as per the PEP SP Participant Handbook – Substantially Comparable Stream.

4.3 Assessment requirements

Partially Comparable Participants:

    1. Partially Comparable Participants must complete the Workplace Based Assessment (WBA) program within six calendar months of commencing the program.

      1. Where the Participant requires additional time to complete the WBA program, they may apply for an extension of their Training Program time. The RACGP will consider requests on a case-by-case basis.

        1. All applications for extension must be submitted a minimum of 20 Business Days prior to the requested start date of the extension.

    2. Partially Comparable Participants must pass the Fellowship Exams per the PEP SP Fellowship Exams Policy  within the Maximum Timeframe.

Substantially Comparable Participants:

    1. Substantially Comparable Participants must satisfactorily complete the Workplace Based Assessment (WBA) program within six calendar months of commencing the program.

      1. To be eligible to commence the WBA program, the Participant must complete three calendar months in Comprehensive Australian General Practice.

      2. Where the Participant requires additional time to complete the WBA program, they may apply for an extension of their Training Program time. The RACGP will consider requests on a case-by-case basis.

        1. All applications for extension must be submitted a minimum of 20 Business Days prior to the requested start date of the extension.

      3. If a Substantially Comparable Participant does not satisfactorily complete the WBA program within two attempts, they will be reassessed as Partially Comparable and must meet the requirements for Fellowship as a Partially Comparable Participant.

        1. Time already spent on the Substantially Comparable stream will count towards the Maximum Timeframe for the Partially Comparable stream.

4.4 Administrative requirements

    1. All Participants must hold current Australian medical registration from the date of commencing work in Comprehensive Australian General Practice until the point of admission to Fellowship. Participants must promptly disclose any:

      1. Addenda on their medical registration, whether in Australia or overseas, and/or

      2. regulatory authority activity, whether in Australia or overseas, that:

        1. has led or may lead to a change in registration status, or

        2. has led to an adverse finding for the Participant or forms part of an ongoing investigation; and/or

      3. other Notifiable Conduct.

    2. All Participants must be a Financial Member of the RACGP from the Date of Entry into PEP SP and throughout their Program Time.

    3. Partially Comparable Participants must be admitted to Fellowship within 2 calendar years (FTE) of starting work in Australian general practice, or up to a maximum of 4 calendar years pro-rata for Part-Time Participants.

    4. Substantially Comparable Participants must be admitted to Fellowship within 12 calendar months (FTE) of starting work in Australian general practice, or up to a maximum of 2 calendar years pro-rata for part-time Participants.

4.5 Professional and ethical requirements

The RACGP reserves the right to withhold admission to Fellowship of the RACGP, if the RACGP reasonably considers that the Participant:

    1. engaged in conduct that would attract sanctions as per clause 27 of the RACGP Constitution,

    2. is unsuitable to be admitted to Fellowship of the RACGP in accordance with the Fellowship Policy, or

    3. has Addenda on their current AHPRA Medical Registration that prevent them from working unsupervised in Comprehensive Australian General Practice.

5. Admission to Fellowship

5.1 The decision to admit a Participant to Fellowship is held by the Censor-in-Chief (CiC) under delegation from the RACGP Board.

6. Amendment of this policy

The Censor-in-Chief (CiC) may, without the consent of the RACGP Board, make Minor, Moderate and Consequential Amendments to this policy at any time.

If the CiC makes amendments, they must advise the RACGP Board of those amendments as soon as practicable.

The RACGP Board may make amendments to this policy at any time.

7. Responsibilities

7.1 Censor-in-Chief

  1. Approving Minor Amendments

  2. Approving Moderate Amendments

  3. Approving Consequential Amendments

7.2 RACGP Board

  1. Approving Major Amendments

  2. Admitting Registrars who have met all requirements, as stipulated in this policy, to Fellowship

7.3 Participant
  1. Ensuring they meet the requirements of this policy to apply for admission to Fellowship

  2. Promptly disclosing any Addenda on their Medical Registration

8. Glossary

8.1 Addenda

Includes, but is not limited to, restrictions, conditions, limitations, reprimands, supervision requirements, tribunal outcomes, suspensions, undertakings and/or any other remarks or changes on a Participant’s medical registration.

Refer to AHPRA’s website for more information.

8.2 Advanced Life Support (ALS) Course As per the requirements listed in the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guide.

8.3 AHPRA Medical Registration

Registration with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), which allows the registrant to practise medicine.

Refer to AHPRA’s website for more information.

8.4 Basic Life Support (BLS) Course

As per the requirements listed in the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guide.

8.5 Comparable / Comparability

The extent to which a Specialist International Medical Graduate’s recency, continuity of practice, continual professional development, assessment, training, qualifications and clinical experience are assessed as equivalent to an Australian-trained specialist general practitioner at the point of admission to Fellowship.

8.6 Comprehensive Australian General Practice

As defined in the Comprehensive Australian general practice guide.

8.7 Consequential amendment

An amendment that requires urgent implementation as a necessary result of an amendment to another policy or process.

8.8 Date of Entry

Date the Participant signs the program agreement.

8.9 Fellowship

Admittance to either:

  1. Fellowship of the RACGP (FRACGP), or

  2. FRACGP and Rural Generalist Fellowship (FRACGP-RG).

8.10 Fellowship Exams

The exams run by the RACGP to assess the Candidate’s competency for unsupervised general practice anywhere in Australia, including:

  1. Applied Knowledge Test (AKT),

  2. Key Feature Problem (KFP), and

  3. Clinical Competency Exam (CCE).

8.11 Financial Member

An RACGP Member who has:
  1. met the membership category requirements,

  2. had their complete membership application form accepted, and

  3. paid their current membership fee in full.

8.12 Full-Time Equivalence (FTE) A 38-hour working week, over a minimum of four days per week. A minimum of 27 hours must be in face-to-face, rostered, patient consultation time undertaking general practice activities. Work periods of less than three consecutive hours, or less than 4 calendar weeks in any one practice, will not be considered. Hours worked beyond this definition of full time will not be considered.

8.13 Major Amendment

An amendment that materially changes the operation of the policy but is not otherwise a Minor or Moderate Amendment (ie a change to one major clause or policy review).

8.14 Maximum Timeframe

The maximum amount of time a Participant can remain on the PEP SP from the day they start their Training Program to the day they are admitted to Fellowship of the RACGP.

  1. Substantially Comparable stream:
    1. Participants who are working in their RACGP-approved practice on a full-time basis must be admitted to FRACGP within 12 calendar months of starting their training program.
    2. Participants who are working in their RACGP-approved practice on a part-time basis must be admitted to FRACGP within 24 calendar months of starting their training program. Their maximum timeframe will be calculated proportionally to their part-time status.
  2. Partially Comparable stream:
    1. Participants who are working in their RACGP-approved Practice on a full-time basis must be admitted to FRACGP within 24 calendar months of starting their training program.
    2. Participants who are working in their RACGP-approved practice on a part-time basis must be admitted to FRACGP within 48 calendar months of starting their training program. The maximum timeframe will be calculated proportionally to their part-time status.

8.15 Minor Amendment  

An amendment to style, to correct grammatical mistakes, change overall formatting, make updates that do not materially change meaning, or any other amendment, which in the opinion of the Censor-in-Chief, does not materially alter the operation of the policy. 

8.16 Moderate Amendment

An amendment that materially changes the operation of a policy by a limited amount (ie a change to one minor clause, or changes that have a limited impact on the outcome of the policy).

8.17 Notifiable Conduct

Notifiable conduct holds the same definition as the Medical Board of Australia’s Guidelines for mandatory notifications about registered health practitioners.
8.18 Partially Comparable Participant A Specialist International Medical Graduate who has been assessed as Partially Comparable to an Australian trained specialist general practitioner at the point of Fellowship, as per the PEP SP Comparability Assessment Guide.
8.19 Participant A Specialist International Medical Graduate who has been accepted into the PEP SP.
8.20 Part-Time Calculated pro-rata against the definition of full-time general practice experience. Part-time general practice must comprise a minimum of 14.5-hour working week, over a minimum of two days per week. A minimum of 10.5 hours must be in face-to-face, rostered, patient consultation time undertaking general practice activities. Work periods of less than three consecutive hours, or of less than four calendar weeks in any one practice, will not be considered.

8.21 Practice Experience Program Specialist (PEP SP)

The route to Fellowship available to Specialist International Medical Graduates who have been assessed as Substantially Comparable or Partially Comparable to an Australian-trained specialist general practitioner at the point of admission to Fellowship.

8.22 RACGP Staff

Anyone who is an employee or contractor of the RACGP.

8.23 Substantially Comparable Participant

A Specialist International Medical Graduate who has been assessed as Substantially Comparable to an Australian trained specialist general practitioner at the point of Fellowship, as per the PEP SP Comparability Assessment Guide.

8.24 Supervision / Supervised Practice

Supervision in line with the principles of supervision and supervised practice, based upon the prescribed Medical Board of Australia's Supervised practice for international medical graduates guidelines.

8.25 Workplace-Based Assessment (WBA)

A framework for evaluating a doctor’s performance and progress in those areas of practice best assessed in the context of the workplace. The aim is to provide evidence that the Participant is competent for unsupervised practice in Australia.

9. Related Documents, Legislation and Policies

10. Policy Review and Currency

This policy will be reviewed every three calendar years from the last approval date, or when there is a significant change in the intent of the policy. This policy remains valid and applicable notwithstanding if it is overdue for review.

 

Version

Date of effect

Amended by

1

01/07/2024

Education Policy and Guidance Lead

Amendment details

  • Development of policy based on previous Practice Experience Program Specialist Stream Policies.

     

Policy owner:

RACGP Board

Approved by:

RACGP Board

Approved on:

15/09/2023

Next Review Due:

09/2026

   

Enquiries

 1800 626 901

 racgpeducation@racgp.org.au

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