More Doctors for Rural Australia Program (MDRAP)

The More Doctors for Rural Australia Program (MDRAP) is a new 3GA program that enables doctors who are non-vocationally registered to work in rural regions and access Medicare.

The Program is part of the Stronger Rural Health Strategy. MDRAP will be commencing on the 29th of April 2019 and will be administered by the Rural Workforce Agencies in each state and the Northern Territory.

Am I eligible for MDRAP?

To be eligible for MDRAP doctors must:
  • hold a current registration with the Medical Board of Australia;
  • have an offer of employment; and
  • have the necessary skills and experience to perform the role.
A doctor’s previous 3GA placement history will be considered when assessing MDRAP applications.

Where can I practice?

Eligible locations for an MDRAP placement are:
  • in a District of Workforce Shortage (DWS); and
  • in an area classified as Modified Monash Model (MMM) 2–7.
Doctors who work at a practice classified as an Aboriginal Medical Service or that hold an exemption under s19 (2) or s19 (5) of the Health Insurance Act 1973 are also eligible for a MDRAP placement.

What can I claim?

Doctors on the MDRAP will be able to access items from group A7 of the Medicare Benefits Schedule. These items are set at 80% of the equivalent general practice items.

How long can I be on the MDRAP?

An initial MDRAP placement is for 2 years. Doctors can seek extensions for a period up to 4 years total in some circumstances.

How does the MDRAP affect my existing 3GA placement ?

There is no requirement for doctors on existing programs including the Rural Locum Relief Program (RLRP) to move to MDRAP and they may continue on their respective programs until the end of the placement.

How will the MDRAP affect my Other Medical Practitioner Program (OMPs)?

The OMPs programs were closed to new participants on the 31 December 2018. Doctors participating in an Other Medical Practitioners (OMPs) program can continue to access OMPs at their existing location or apply for access at a MDRAP location (if eligible). OMPs grandfathering arrangements are in place for doctors who maintain their eligibility up to 30 June 2023.

What will I have to do?

The MDRAP supports doctors working towards joining a college Fellowship Program; doctors participating in the MDRAP must make a minimum of one application to a Fellowship Program each year.

Doctors who participate in the MDRAP must complete foundation general practice training modules provided by either the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners or the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine within 6 months of commencing on the MDRAP.

Doctors who participate in the MDRAP for a year must ensure at least half of the annual professional development required by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHRPA) is relevant to general practice.

Will I have to be supervised?

The MDRAP provides a supervision framework for doctors who have less than 6 months general practice experience. The supervision requirements vary depending on the category of the doctor. Information about supervision is available in the MDRAP Guidelines.

What are the GP College Fellowship Programs

The Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) and Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) offer two Fellowship Programs with multiple training streams. Further information is available in the GP Fellowship Programs factsheet, and on the two GP college websites:

How do I apply?

To apply for the MDRAP contact the Rural Workforce Agency in you state or territory

Links to RWAs

NSW Rural Doctors Network

Northern Territory PHN

Health Workforce Queensland

Rural Doctors Workforce Agency (South Australia)

HR+ (Tasmania)

Rural Workforce Agency Victoria

Rural Health West – Western Australia

Program Guidelines