Withdrawal Policy


Policy

1. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to define the principles and circumstances under which the Registrar may withdraw or be withdrawn from the Training Program.

2. Scope

2.1 This policy applies to:

    1. Registrars enrolled in the:

      1. Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) program, and

      2. Fellowship Support Program (FSP),

    2. general practitioners (GPs) training towards RACGP Rural Generalist Fellowship, and

    3. RACGP Staff.

2.2 This policy is to be read in conjunction with the relevant Registrar handbooks and staff training manuals.

2.3 This policy replaces the previous AGPT Withdrawal Policy 2020 and related Regional training organisation policies and will come into effect on the first day of the first term of the Training Program in 2023. For the avoidance of doubt, to the extent that there is any inconsistency between the previous policies and this policy, the terms of this policy apply.

3. General principles

3.1 The RACGP recognises that circumstances may arise that require Registrars to withdraw (voluntary) or be withdrawn (involuntary) from the Training Program.

3.2 The RACGP is committed to ensuring the withdrawal process:

    1. observes the rules of natural justice, and

    2. complies with legislative requirements, including anti-discrimination and privacy legislation.

3.3 The RACGP will offer case management support to Registrars throughout the withdrawal process.

4. Voluntary withdrawal

4.1 Registrars must inform the RACGP in writing if they wish to voluntarily withdraw from:

    1. the Training Program either:

      1. after Commencement of Training, or

      2. prior to Commencement of Training, and

    2. the RACGP Rural Generalist Fellowship.

4.2 Registrars who voluntarily withdraw receive a Cooling Off Period of 20 Business Days (Cooling Off Period) to enable them to reconsider their decision to withdraw from the Training Program.

    1. Registrars who withdraw prior to their Commencement of Training do not receive the Cooling Off Period, unless the RACGP advises otherwise.

    2. Registrars who have withdrawn voluntarily from the Training Program and are seeking to reapply for entry can waive the Cooling Off Period.

4.3 Registrars who voluntarily withdraw cannot apply for reconsideration or appeal as per the Disputes, Reconsideration and Appeals Policy.

5. Involuntary withdrawal

5.1 The RACGP will advise a Registrar in writing before withdrawing the Registrar.

5.2 Involuntary withdrawal can be based on issues of:

    1. Clinical Competence, where the Registrar is unable to sustain an acceptable level of Clinical Competence to progress with their Training Program, or

    2. Capacity, where the Registrar is willing but unable to continue the Training Program, including but not limited to instances where the Registrar:

      1. fails to maintain their AHPRA Medical Registration as required by their Training Program, and

      2. has Addenda imposed on their medical registration which renders them unable to progress with their program.

    3. Compliance, where the Registrar fails to comply with their Education and Training Requirements, including but not limited to instances such as: 

      1. non-compliance with or non-completion of the requirements of an approved Remediation term,

      2. repeated failure to respond to correspondence from the RACGP relating to the Registrar’s enrolment in the Training Program,

        1. Prior to withdrawing the Registrar, the RACGP must attempt to make contact with the Registrar a minimum of three times, including once by certified/registered mail, over an eight-calendar week period.

      1. inability to meet their Program Time requirements as per the Training Program Requirements Policy and Extensions of Training Time Policy,

      2. the RACGP assesses the Registrar as not meeting the required standards to enable them to successfully be admitted to Fellowship and subsequently obtain registration as a specialist GP,

      3. inability to join the Training Program after deferring Commencement of Training for 52 calendar weeks,

      4. failure to maintain Financial RACGP Membership throughout training, and

      5. AGPT Registrars who currently hold Accepted Temporary Visas and do not obtain permanent residency or citizenship of Australia or New Zealand prior to Completion of Training.

5.3 The Registrar will have 20 Business Days from the date of withdrawal or the date of Receiving the Notification of their withdrawal, whichever is later, to raise a dispute regarding their withdrawal as per the Disputes, Reconsiderations and Appeals Policy. If no dispute is lodged, the RACGP will formally withdraw the Registrar from the Training Program.

    1. Registrars cannot lodge a dispute against their withdrawal from the Training Program if this withdrawal has occurred as the result of the outcome of an appeal.

5.4 Once the Registrar is formally withdrawn from the Training Program they cannot be reinstated unless the decision to withdraw them is overturned. The withdrawal of a Registrar can only be overturned through the RACGP’s appeal process as per the Disputes, Reconsiderations and Appeals Policy.

5.5 The RACGP will determine the conditions under which the Registrar may reapply for entry into the Training Program following involuntary withdrawal. These may include, but are not limited to:

    1. minimum timeframes for entry into a Training Program after previous involuntary withdrawal and

    2. proof of satisfactory completion of remedial activities relating to the reason for withdrawal, or

    3. barring re-entry into the Training Program.

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

  1. Advising the Registrar before formally withdrawing them
  2. Attempting to make contact with the Registrar a minimum of three times, including once by certified/registered mail over an eight-calendar week period if withdrawing a Registrar under clause 5.2.iii.b of this policy
  3. Formally withdrawing the Registrar from the Training Program
  4. Notifying the Department of Human Services – Medicare in writing to remove the withdrawn Registrar from the Register of Approved Placements.

7.3 RACGP Board

  1. Approving Major Amendments

7.4 Registrar

  1. Notifying their RACGP in writing if they choose to withdraw voluntarily
  2. Raising a dispute within 20 Business Days after notification of involuntary withdrawal

 

8. Glossary

8.1 Accepted Temporary Visas

Visas accepted by the Registrar’s Training Region, as determined by the relevant application handbook.

8.2 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 Registrar’s medical registration.

Refer to AHPRA’s website for more information.

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 Business Days

A day when both the RACGP national and relevant regional offices are operating.

8.5 Clinical Competence

Demonstrated ability to consistently perform relevant clinical tasks to the standard prescribed in the Progressive capability profile of the general practitioner.

8.6 Commencement of Training

The first day on which a GPiT begins their RACGP-Approved Program.

8.7 Completion of Training

The point at which the RACGP deems that the Registrar has completed their Training Program requirements, as per the Training Program Requirements Policy.

8.8 Consequential Amendment

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

8.9 Cooling Off Period

The 20 Business Days after the Registrar voluntarily withdraws from their Training Program.

8.10 Education and Training Requirements

The mandatory components of the Registrar’s RACGP-Approved Program as defined in the relevant Registrar handbook.

8.11 Fellowship

Admittance to either:

  1. Fellowship of the RACGP (FRACGP), or
  2. FRACGP and Rural Generalist Fellowship (FRACGP-RG).

8.12 Financial RACGP 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.

8.13 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 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. 

8.15 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).

8.16 Program Time

The length of time required to complete an RACGP-Approved Program.

8.17 RACGP Staff

Anyone who is an employee or contractor of the RACGP.

8.18 Receiving the Notification

The RACGP deems a Registrar to have received a notification as:

  1. the date the RACGP sends the email, or
  2. the confirmed date of delivery of the registered mail.

8.19 Registrar

The medical practitioner enrolled on the:

  1. Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) program, or
  2. Remote Vocational Training Scheme (RVTS)

8.20 Remediation

The process by which a Registrar receives additional support requiring funding and suspension of Program Time in order to address performance concerns.

8.21 Training Program

Either the:

  1. Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) program, or
  2. Fellowship Support Program (FSP).

8.22 Training Region

An area in which the RACGP delivers general practice training as defined by the relevant Training Program.

 

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 history

Version

Date of effect

Amended by

1

The start date of the first term of the Training Program in 2023

Education Policy and Guidance Lead

Amendment details

  • Simplified types of withdrawal, though the principles remain the same
  • Clarified wording around temporary visas
  • The RACGP can assess re-entry into Training Programs on a case-by-case basis after involuntary withdrawal

Policy owner:

RACGP Board

Approved by:

RACGP Board

Approved on:

23/06/2022

Next review due:

06/2025

 

 

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