Fund to fight for fairer scale for bush doctors

RURAL doctors will establish a “fighting fund” seeking contributions from rural councils, businesses and communities to continue their campaign against the unpopular classification system used to determine payments to GPs in the bush.

The move comes despite the government last week bowing to demands from the RDAA and the AMA for the release of a University of Adelaide study into the effects of the Australian Standard Geographical Classification – Remoteness Area (ASGC-RA) system.

The study said a dual system combining a population and distance based classification with classifications based on particular services, such as health and education, had originally been planned but was scrapped in favour of a generic model based only on population and distance from major centres.

The report acknowledged criticisms, as aired by the RDAA, that the ASGC-RA created “problems [when] similar places [find] themselves either side of a