150 more specialist training spots in 2013

Health Minister Tanya Plibersek announced the new positions during a visit to Wollongong Hospital yesterday, as part of a $346 million package.

"In 2013, the Australian government will fund salaries and supervision costs for 750 trainee doctors across Australia as part of our Specialist Training Program. Around half of these positions will be in rural, regional and remote locations – areas of greatest need for additional medical specialists," she said in a statement.

The federal government currently funds 600 positions.

"This comes on top of our unprecedented investment in primary care, including doubling the number of GP training places. By the year 2014, this will have increased to 1200 per year."

Ms Plibersek said the Specialist Training Program was training specialists in locations of need in a range of settings, including public, community and non-clinical settings.

"On completion of their training, these specialists