Call to lift residency barrier for IMGs

IMGs should not have to wait until they have secured their permanent Australian residency before beginning a training program, according to General Practice Education and Training (GPET).

Giving evidence to a recent hearing of the parliamentary inquiry into the registration and support of IMGs, Robert Hale, GPET national general manager, quality and education, said IMGs with temporary residency were precluded from most training programs.

“We would like to see the temporary residency barrier removed because we do think it prevents a particular cohort of doctors from easily accessing training and support, and they are often the most vulnerable,” Mr Hale told the inquiry.

Dr Sue Douglas, former vice president of the Australian Doctors Trained Overseas Association, backed the idea.  

“A lot of IMGs have suggested this idea for a long time, but the implications have to be clearly thought out,” she said.