Preparing for Placement
As part of your rural generalist training, you need to complete a six-month placement for core EMT and a 12-month placement for your ARST. The process for managing these RG-specific placements is different to the general practice training term placement process and will vary between regions.
The RGCUs are funded to support rural generalist training via their coordinating function with their respective state or territory health department and other rural stakeholder organisations. However, the operation of RGCUs is quite different between regions and your program team will help you navigate the resources in your region. Finding a suitable placement for your training will involve discussions with your program team and your RGCU. Being proactive will increase the likelihood of securing your ideal placement.
During your induction meeting, you and your program team will begin to identify the specialties you wish to train in and the location where you would like to complete your placements. You will liaise with your program team, local RGCU and training hospitals and/or clinics to coordinate your placement. You may be required to go through a competitive interview process for some ARST posts, either through an RGCU coordinated process or via the health facility where you wish to train.
If you have already identified a placement, you will need to discuss this with your program team early to ensure that the hospital or clinic can meet the requirements of the curriculum and is appropriately accredited before you start. For hospital-based posts in an accredited facility, the program team will need to check that the supervision and teaching plans are appropriate to accredit the post for your placement.
It is your responsibility to ensure that preparations for your placements are completed before your start in your training post. For AGPT registrars, refer to the Preparing for a placement page for more information on what is needed in preparation for your placement.
If you are training in anaesthesia, emergency medicine or obstetrics, you will need to ensure payment has been made to the relevant medical college. If you are completing an RACGP managed curriculum for your ARST, you will be invoiced prior to commencement of your placement (Refer to Fees).
Accreditation of placements
Your local program team will liaise with you and your training post to ensure that the site is accredited. If the post is not already accredited, your program team and the RACGP accreditation team will ensure that all requirements can be met so that the post can be accredited. There is no guarantee that a particular unaccredited post will become accredited not that accreditation will occur by a certain time.
Accreditation of your training post may include considerations such as:
- is there appropriate supervision throughout training?
- does remote supervision need to be considered in your location (where applicable)?
- have you identified an independent assessor for your training post?
- does the training post have a relevant teaching schedule available?
- can the training post deliver all components of the curriculum?
- if there are any gaps in what the training post can deliver, what is the plan for covering the entire curriculum?
In addition, for ARST training posts, this may involve accreditation by other specialist colleges for the specific discipline, such as ANZCA, ACEM, RANZCOG, RACP or RACS.
To access a list of accredited posts for ARSTs, please speak to your training coordinator.
Supervision during your rural generalist training
You will need to ensure that an appropriate supervisor is available for your placement. You can refer to the ARST training post requirements or the relevant curriculum for additional information.
Remote supervision may be used in training sites where there is no accredited supervisor onsite, if appropriate. Remote supervision aims to provide high-quality training options for registrars to work in locations where there is limited or no regular onsite supervision. During remote supervision, registrars are primarily supervised by a supervisor who is offsite, using phone and videoconferencing to teach, support and ensure real-time assistance when needed. Training sites and supervisors will need to be accredited for remote supervision and adhere to the remote supervision guidelines to ensure registrar and patient safety.
Cultural mentors provide you with a source of cultural expertise, advice and support. They will typically be a local Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander health worker/practitioner, an Elder, or another respected member of the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, and may be filled by more than one individual over the course of your training. Their role is to provide advice and assistance in relation to:
- cross-cultural communication skills and culturally safe clinical practices
- understanding the cultural, political, and community-controlled context
- developing the attitudes, knowledge, and skills the candidate needs to work effectively in the community
- ‘bridging the cultural divide’.
Applying for placements
Your program team will be able to help you apply for core EMT and ARST posts. This will usually be done in collaboration with the RGCUs, particularly if the posts are hospital-based or involve other health department facilities.
Depending on your location, you may need to apply via your region’s RGCU or directly to your prospective training facility and supervisor. You must keep your training team informed, even if you are already working with your RGCU to secure an accredited training post. This will ensure the post is appropriately accredited for your placement and you will have the best chance of successfully completing your training requirements.
Tips for preparing for your placement
- Familiarise yourself with your training requirements for your level of training. Check with your training coordinator and ME.
CV and cover letter
- Update your CV with your latest education and employment history and ensure it is presented to a professional standard. You will be competing with other GP registrars and other trainees for places and your CV is how you make yourself stand out.
- Contact your preferred referees, ask whether they would be happy to help, check if they have leave planned during the training post selection period, and confirm their preferred contact details.
If you need to relocate for your ARST or core EMT training, check with your training team and RGCU about available financial and other support you may be able to access.
Confirmation of placement checklist
Once you have a placement arranged, you will need to:
- inform your program team
- update your training plan details
- ensure the training post is accredited before you start the placement. Your program team will assist you with this.
- ensure fees have been paid before you start your placement (as required).
Commencing your placement
At the beginning of a new placement:
- you’ll receive an orientation to the training site(s) and team
- your training for the duration of the placement should be planned and the plan regularly updated in your logbooks
- you’ll have an initial period of supervision to determine the level of supervisor support you require to ensure safety.
Before you start, ensure that:
- you have the necessary provider number and other documentation required by the training site(s)
- you and the training site(s) have completed the RACGP placement contract
- you have finalised your employment agreement with the training site(s).
Exception to location requirements
For AGPT registrars
If you need to be granted an exception to your training location requirement, please refer to the AGPT registrar training handbook for more information and speak with your training coordinator.
For RVTS and FSP registrars and practising GPs
You are responsible for finding an appropriate training post and there is no location requirement applicable to you for your ARST, unless listed in the relevant curriculum. You will need to have completed at least 12 months in rural general practice or as per the RPLE requirements.