GPs unhappy with ‘crazy’ rural classification system

Mr Snowden said he was “aware of the issues which have been raised” and said the Australian Standard Geographic Classification – Remoteness Area (ASGC-RA) system would be reviewed once the latest census data became available.

That wasn’t good enough for Queensland GP Dr Bryan Connor though, whose town of Cloncurry is classified just one degree more remote than Cairns and Townsville under the ASGC-RA system.

“Nobody in their right mind thinks making Cairns and Townsville RA3 does anything [to help] rural health,” he said. 

“I defy [Health Minister Nicola Roxon] to drive 800 km from Townsville to Cloncurry and tell us there is one grade difference in rurality – it is crazy stuff.”

Mr Dutton said the problems with the ASGC?RA had been largely ignored by the government.

Meanwhile, a request from RDAA president Dr Paul Mara, for delegates who felt the system was working well