The Specialist Pathway Program (SPP) is now closed. Any person whose application to the SPP was completed before 14 September 2018 may continue on the SPP under this policy. If you wish to have your international specialist qualification recognised by the RACGP after 14 September 2018, please refer to the Specialist Recognition Program Comparability Assessment Policy.
1. Specialist Pathway Category Three - Requirements for Fellowship Policy
1.1 Policy number:CO-E-0025.0
1.3 Approval date:November 2016
1.4 Revision due date:November 2019
1.5 Unit responsible:Education Services
2. Policy declaration
Candidates in category three of the Specialist Pathway must meet all requirements detailed in this policy to be awarded Fellowship of the RACGP.
This policy is authorised by the CEO.
This policy aims to describe the requirements for Fellowship for Candidates in category three of the Specialist Pathway.
The policy applies to Candidates in category three of the Specialist Pathway.
For the purposes of this policy:
- Candidate means a medical practitioner who is enrolled in category three of the Specialist Pathway.
- Full time general practice experience comprises a 38-hour minimum working week, over a minimum of four days per week, of which 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 of less than one month in any one practice, will not be considered. Hours worked beyond this definition of full time will not be considered.
- Part time general practice experience is calculated pro-rata against the definition of full time general practice experience. Part time general practice must comprise a 14.5-hour minimum working week, over a minimum of two days per week, of which 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 one month in any one practice, will not be considered.
5. Requirements for Fellowship
5.1 Education requirements
Candidates must complete:
a. The Specialist Pathway Education Program as amended from time to time, within six months of commencing work in Australian general practice.
b. A Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) course completed within the twelve months prior to applying for Fellowship. The requirements are detailed in RACGP’s Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Advanced Life Support Courses Guidance Document
c. Training in the early management of trauma and advanced life support (ALS) completed within the four years prior to applying for Fellowship. The requirements are detailed in RACGP’s Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Advanced Life Support Courses Guidance Document
d. Register and fulfil the requirements of the RACGP’s Quality Improvement and Continuing Professional Development (QI&CPD) program.
5.2 Experience requirements
a. Commence work in Australian general practice within twelve months of a successful Fitness for Intended Clinical Practice (FICPI) outcome.
b. Complete 12 to 24 months full time equivalent general practice, as determined by the RACGP, under supervision during their candidature in the Specialist Pathway. The intended position may be part-time, but must meet the published part-time requirements in clause 4.c. The supervision must:
i. be undertaken by an RACGP Fellow or be accepted by their peers as an excellent general practice clinician
ii. meet the Medical Board of Australia’s Guidelines: Supervised Practice for International Medical Graduates.
c. Complete a 3 month orientation report.
d. Complete 3 month, 6 month, 12 month and 24 month supervision reports, as appropriate.
e. Notify the RACGP of any changes to their employment during their candidature in the Specialist Pathway, within 10 business days of the event’s occurrence. All employment must be approved by the RACGP. Prior to a candidate commencing work in any new practice, the arrangement must be approved by the RACGP.
5.3 Assessment requirements
a. Must pass RACGP's Applied Knowledge Test (AKT), Key Feature Problem (KFP) and Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) within two calendar years of the date of commencing work in Australian general practice.
b. Must pass the AKT and KFP as a prerequisite to undertaking the OSCE.
c. Who do not satisfy the assessment requirements will be subject to clause 6.
d. Are subject to restrictions on exam attempts in accord with the Fellowship Exam Attempts Policy.
5.4 Professional and ethical requirements
The RACGP reserves the right to withhold awarding an applicant Fellowship of the RACGP, if the RACGP reasonably considers the applicant:
a. would be at risk of breaching clause 27 of RACGP’s Constitution.
b. is generally unsuitable to hold Fellowship of the RACGP as detailed in RACGP’s Fit and Proper Fellow Policy.
5.5 Administrative requirements
a. Hold current Australian medical registration from the date of commencing work in Australian general practice and throughout their candidature. Candidates must promptly disclose all details of any:
i. restrictions on or changes to their medical registration
ii. regulatory authority activity, whether in Australia or otherwise, that:
a. has led or may lead to a restriction on practice
b. has led to an adverse finding for the medical practitioner, or forms part of an ongoing investigation.
Due to restrictions on their medical registration or any other regulatory authority activity, Candidates may not be able to fulfil the requirements for Fellowship via the Specialist Pathway. Failure to disclose 5.5ai or 5.5aii will be handled as per the Educational Misconduct Policy.
b. Be a financial RACGP member from time of joining the Specialist Pathway and throughout their candidature.
c. Apply for Fellowship within one year of successful completion of all of the requirements of the pathway. For further information see RACGP’s Applying for Fellowship of the RACGP via Category Three of the Specialist Pathway Guidance Document
6. Changing Fellowship pathway
Candidates can only be enrolled in one Fellowship pathway at a time. If a Candidate seeks to participate in a different Fellowship pathway, they must resign their candidature in the Specialist Pathway and apply for entry into an alternative pathway. If a change in pathway is accepted, the Candidate must then meet all of the requirements of the new pathway to be awarded Fellowship of the RACGP.
7. Termination from the Specialist Pathway
7.1 Candidates who fail to meet the requirements of the Specialist Pathway or whom fail to maintain adequate progression may be terminated from the Specialist Pathway.
7.2 Candidates who are terminated from the Specialist Pathway may apply for re-entry into an alternative RACGP Fellowship pathway.
8. Awarding of Fellowship of the RACGP
The determination to award Fellowship of the RACGP is made by Council and is dependent on the recommendation of the Board of Censors.
9. Related policies, documents and legislation
All policies and guidance documents related to the Specialist Pathway are available on our policy page.
10. Administrative procedures
10.1 Access to published policy
This policy will be available via the RACGP website as detailed in clause 9.
10.2 Promulgation of published policy
Relevant staff members will be provided communications explaining the function and role of this policy.
10.3 Review of this policy
This policy will have a review cycle of three years.