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1/6 of 2015 commencing medical students won’t be able to become fully qualified doctors


According to new projections released by the Department of Health, unless there is an increase in the number of post-medical school training positions available, around one in six students entering medical school in 2015 will not be able to complete their medical training and go on to become a fully qualified doctor.

Why is this the case?
There is a mismatch between the number of domestic medical graduates and the availability of vocational training opportunities required to become a fully qualified doctor:

  • Medical student commencements and completions have more than doubled since 2000
  • There has been a 43% increase in the number of vocational training positions between 2008 and 2012

Table based on numbers from Australia’s Future Health Workforce – Doctors

To quickly recap, following medical school, graduates will generally complete an internship and a residency before becoming a registrar by gaining entry into a vocational training program. If you require further information on the medical training pathway, be sure to look at our article How long does it take to become a doctor?

The Department of Health has released a new workforce document Australia’s Future Health Workforce – Doctors (AFHW – Doctors), which is a revision of the previous workforce supply projections released by Health Workforce Australia. In 2012 Health Workforce Australia released a report Health Workforce 2025 Volume 1 and 2: Doctors, nurses and midwives. However, the agency was closed in August 2014, with the operations being moved to the Department of Health.

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Image:  DIBP Images – flickr

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