17 May 2024

GPs celebrated on World Family Doctor Day

Australia's GPs are being celebrated for their work helping people live healthier and contributing to communities across the country, in the lead up to World Family Doctor Day on Sunday 19 May. 

The Royal Australian College of GPs (RACGP) President Dr Nicole Higgins said the expertise and contributions of Australia’s specialist general practitioners is often unrecognised and underappreciated. 

“Many people don’t realise GPs are specialists. We do the same eight years medical training as any other medical specialist, plus at least three years training in a practice to specialise as a GP,” she said. 

“The role GPs play in our health system is unique. GPs are the only specialists who provides ‘whole person care’, from the start of life right up until the end.  

“Research shows the value of the GP-patient relationship, and how it results in better health. People who have a regular GP have less hospital admissions and live longer, healthier lives.  

“GPs are the most visited health professional in our country – more than 22 million Australians received 179 million services from GPs in 2022. 

“General practice is also the most cost-effective form of care – it costs taxpayers over $600 when someone goes to hospital, before they’re even admitted, whereas it’s only $80 for 40 minutes with a GP. 

“GPs are needed now more than ever. Our demographics show that we have an ageing population, and nearly half of all Australians are living with chronic illness, including mental health issues.  

“This means more people require complex, ongoing care in the community from a GP, who knows them and works together with other specialists, allied health, nurses, and pharmacists to ensure they gets the best care, and – just as importantly - the right care, at the right time. 

“This World Family Doctor Day, I want to thank Australia’s GPs for their contributions in helping Australians live healthier and longer and keeping the engine of our world class health system running.” 

Media enquiries

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