Member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd has backed the Department of Health's decision for Gladstone to no longer be considered a priority area for GPs.
Member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd has backed the Department of Health's decision for Gladstone to no longer be considered a priority area for GPs. Matt Taylor GLA100419FLYNN

Ken O'Dowd backs medical reclassification

MEMBER for Flynn Ken O'Dowd has stood by the Department of Health's decision to no longer classify Gladstone as having a general practitioner shortage, despite the council and local doctors calling for the move to be reversed.

Under the new classification Gladstone medical practices must hire Australian doctors who have passed their Australian GP exam or doctors who have worked in Australia for 10 years.

Mr O'Dowd said the change ensured a better distributed and well supported health workforce that can meet emerging community needs.

"The new Distribution Priority Area system takes into consideration the GP services an area receives, demographics and socio-economic factors of patients rather than the simple GP to population ratio which was used to determine Districts of Workforce Shortage,'' Mr O'Dowd said.



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