From 1 July 2022, the Rural Generalist (RG) Fellowship replaced the Fellowship in Advanced Rural General Practice (FARGP).
Why the change?
In 2019, the RACGP endorsed the National Rural Generalist Pathway (NRGP) and approved the development of the new rural generalist (RG) Fellowship to align with the new pathway. We’ve also been working with the Rural Health Commissioner and the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine on having RG medicine recognised as a specialised field of general practice by the Australian Medical Council.
The purpose of the NRGP and RG recognition is to ensure an agreed, nationally consistent standard and clear definition of an RG and an RG’s scope of practice. We hope that achieving a protected title and consistent standards will allow us to more effectively advocate for credentialing and remuneration for RGs.
The training requirements for the RG Fellowship are similar to the FARGP, with the core-emergency medicine training and Additional Rural Skills Training (ARST) curricula updated to align with the NRGP. To ease the transition to the RG Fellowship, we made these curricula available to FARGP registrars and practising GPs from the beginning of this year.
RG training requirements include:
- a 12-month full-time equivalent (FTE) hospital term (can be postgraduate year 2 or above)
- 18 months of FTE community-based GP terms (minimum of 12 months FTE must be in a rural MMM3–7 location)
- six months of FTE core emergency medicine training
- 12 months of FTE ARST
- an (optional) six-month extended skills term in either a hospital, community GP or community non-GP setting.
We’ll support GPs in training to make the switch from the FARGP to the Rural Generalist Fellowship if they’d like to, and there will be no cost to do so. Upon completion, they’ll be awarded the new Fellowship of the RACGP Rural Generalist and will be able to use the post-nominals FRACGP-RG in addition to FRACGP.
If they’ve started training towards the FARGP, and would prefer to complete it, we'll support them to do so. Upon completion, they’ll receive the Fellowship in Advanced Rural General Practice and be able to use the post-nominals FARGP in addition to FRACGP. If they change their mind later, they can apply for the RG Fellowship via an application for recognition of prior learning that demonstrates evidence of working across the full scope of practice, including in emergency.
Recognition of prior learning and experience
We’ve developed a guidance document on the principles and processes for transitioning to the RG Fellowship, including how prior learning and experience will be recognised. The following principles underpin this guidance document:
- Hospital and community general practice time completed will be recognised, noting you must meet the requirements of 12 months’ full-time equivalent of general practice in a rural (MMM3–7) location.
- Completion of the Additional Rural Skills Training (ARST) using FARGP curricula will be recognised as completion of an ARST under the RG Fellowship.
- If you’ve yet to complete ARST, you should do so using the new RG curricula.
- If you’ve completed the FARGP emergency medicine module, you must provide additional evidence to demonstrate you meet the requirements of the revised core-emergency medicine training or complete further emergency training.
You can find more details in the guidance document.
As a FARGP graduate, you will retain the FARGP and can continue using the post-nominals. You can also apply to obtain the RG Fellowship by submitting evidence of prior learning and experience, including:
- current rural hospital credentialing to provide emergency services,
- previous rural hospital credentialing to provide emergency services (within ten years), or
- admittance to Fellowship of the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (FACCRM).
GPs who have never been credentialed to provide emergency services in a rural hospital will need to show evidence of having completed training equivalent to the core-EMT.
We’ve developed a guidance document on the principles and process for transitioning to the RG Fellowship on the website.
The fee for FARGP graduates wishing to obtain the RG Fellowship is $675 inc GST which covers the cost of administration processes.
By obtaining the RG Fellowship you will be recognised as an RG should the application to the Australian Medical Council be successful. The RG Fellowship is a more easily identifiable RG qualification. It allows you to be formally recognised for the additional skills that you use to service the needs of your rural or remote community.
Transition Q&A recording
We held a Q&A webinar for those interested in transitioning to the new Fellowship.
Apply now Transition to RG Fellowship for current trainees
Apply now Transition to RG Fellowship for FARGP holders
Frequently asked questions
You can find answers to some frequently asked questions on the transition to the RG Fellowship on the website.