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Article

Faculties to Support General Practitioners Working Rurally at Broader Scope: A National Cross-Sectional Study of Their Value

Rural Clinical School, The University of Queensland, Rockhampton 4700, Australia
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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4652; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17134652
Received: 11 June 2020 / Revised: 19 June 2020 / Accepted: 25 June 2020 / Published: 28 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Future Health Workforce: Integrated Solutions and Models of Care)
Strategies are urgently needed to foster rural general practitioners (GPs) with the skills and professional support required to adequately address healthcare needs in smaller, often isolated communities. Australia has uniquely developed two national-scale faculties that target rural practice: the Fellowship in Advanced Rural General Practice (FARGP) and the Fellowship of the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (FACRRM). This study evaluates the benefit of rural faculties for supporting GPs practicing rurally and at a broader scope. Data came from an annual national survey of Australian doctors from 2008 and 2017, providing a cross-sectional design. Work location (rurality) and scope of practice were compared between FACRRM and FARGP members, as well as standard non-members. FACRRMs mostly worked rurally (75–84%, odds ratio (OR) 8.7, 5.8–13.1), including in smaller rural communities (<15,000 population) (41–54%, OR 3.5, 2.3–5.3). FARGPs also mostly worked in rural communities (56–67%, OR 4.2, 2.2–7.8), but fewer in smaller communities (25–41%, OR 1.1, 0.5–2.5). Both FACRRMs and FARGPs were more likely to use advanced skills, especially procedural skills. GPs with fellowship of a rural faculty were associated with significantly improved geographic distribution and expanded scope, compared with standard GPs. Given their strong outcomes, expanding rural faculties is likely to be a critical strategy to building and sustaining a general practice workforce that meets the needs of rural communities. View Full-Text
Keywords: general practitioners; postgraduate medical training; rural workforce; medical faculty; advanced skills; scope of practice; vocational education; primary health care; rural population; family physicians general practitioners; postgraduate medical training; rural workforce; medical faculty; advanced skills; scope of practice; vocational education; primary health care; rural population; family physicians
MDPI and ACS Style

McGrail, M.R.; O’Sullivan, B.G. Faculties to Support General Practitioners Working Rurally at Broader Scope: A National Cross-Sectional Study of Their Value. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 4652. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17134652

AMA Style

McGrail MR, O’Sullivan BG. Faculties to Support General Practitioners Working Rurally at Broader Scope: A National Cross-Sectional Study of Their Value. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(13):4652. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17134652

Chicago/Turabian Style

McGrail, Matthew R., and Belinda G. O’Sullivan 2020. "Faculties to Support General Practitioners Working Rurally at Broader Scope: A National Cross-Sectional Study of Their Value" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 13: 4652. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17134652

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