If surgeons quit, Qld hospitals may fall

In an open letter, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) president Associate Professor Michael Hollands said any effort by the Queensland government to replace protesting specialist surgeons with IMGs may result in a repeat of the Jayant Patel case.

"Recruiting specialist surgeons from overseas to fill service gaps is not easy, nor a speedy solution. Standards differ, cultures differ and the surgical care required by the community is not always transferable,” Professor Hollands said. 

“Queenslanders, particularly, have an extremely high profiled awareness of this. It is just over 10 years since the appointment of Dr Jayant Patel to Bundaberg Hospital.

"Since then, it has taken many years for Queensland Health to restore its integrity and commitment to high quality surgical services, and to rebuild the trust of the public and the surgical profession."

He said mass resignations would have dire long-term effects on