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AGPT practice and supervisor handbook

For supervisors

Primary and secondary supervisors

Primary and secondary supervisors

A supervisor who has full responsibility for a registrar and the practice supervisory team is known as the ‘primary supervisor’. Other supervisors who assist the primary supervisor in some tasks or act as deputies when the primary supervisor is absent are known as ‘secondary supervisors’. Each registrar must have a primary supervisor.

This approach ensures there’s adequate supervision coverage whenever a registrar is consulting and exposes the registrar to a range of approaches to general practice. It also allows larger practices with multiple registrars to have more than one primary supervisor. A supervisor may be a primary supervisor for one registrar and a secondary supervisor for another. The primary supervisor is the RACGP’s main point of contact regarding the registrar.

The positions of primary and secondary supervisor aren’t hierarchical, rather, there’s a choice in the level of responsibility taken by a supervisor for a registrar. A primary supervisor has overall responsibility for a registrar, for ensuring patient safety, and for ensuring that educational requirements are met. Secondary supervisors don’t have this degree of responsibility. In recognition of this different level of responsibility, the minimum training requirements to be a secondary supervisor are less than those of a primary supervisor.

The definitions of primary and secondary supervisor are the same for supervisors who provide remote supervision.