SA offers $750,000 salary to attract GPs to Lameroo-Pinnaroo District

Australian city is so desperate for a doctor it’s offering a $750,000 salary – but the job posting has other GPs furious

  • Ad is offering $750,000 for GPs willing to practice in the district 150 miles outside Adelaide
  • SA government is offering the salary with other perks and no hospital overheads
  • The average salary for a general practitioner is $232,903, with doctors often paying for clinic expenses
  • SA’s doctor shortage has resulted in regional hospitals offering $3,000 for a shift

South Australia is so short on doctors that GPs are being offered a staggering $750,000 to relocate 150 miles outside of Adelaide.

The whopping salary, which is three times the average salary for general practitioners, is said to attract a doctor to the Mallee district in the east of the state.

The successful candidate will receive employer contributions for retirement benefits, salary sacrifice and vacation time in addition to the advertised salary range of $475,763 to $752,224 per year.

The paramedic will be based in the towns of Lameroo and Pinnaroo, which are 40km apart.

According to the Australian Revenue Agency, non-specialist doctors receive an average taxable income of $232,903 in 2019-20.

The South African town of Pinaroo is looking for a new doctor and regional health authorities are offering top dollar to get one

The South African town of Pinaroo is looking for a new doctor and regional health authorities are offering top dollar to get one

Since the clinic is run by the state government, there are no costs for resident doctors.

The activity includes the management of inpatient, outpatient and general medical services as well as the supervision of trainees and family doctor assistants.

The shortage of doctors in regional and rural areas of South Africa is so great that $3,000 has been offered to cover a shift in hospitals.

The Riverland Mallee Coorong Local Health Network said the position is being advertised to fill a vacancy left by a longtime family doctor.

“We have already hired a part-time GP to partially fill the void left by the outgoing GP and we look forward to recruiting another GP to our area to expand the services available in the Southern Mallee area “, it said in a statement.

“The successful candidate may choose to be a salaried employee or work as a contractor and earn Medicare income and fill a gap.

‘While this is the first example in the region where a resident GP can be incorporated into a general practice, SA Health employs GPs at other locations, including some medical staff at Riverland General Hospital.’

There is a severe shortage of doctors in rural South Australia and a regional health service is offering $750,000 to move there

There is a severe shortage of doctors in rural South Australia and a regional health service is offering $750,000 to move there

The huge salary comes at a time when frustrated family doctors have spoken out about the failure of Medicare rebates to keep up with rising costs, forcing them to cut patient care.

In some clinics, GPs are pressured to allocate just six minutes to each bulk-billed patient.

“Churn-and-burn medicine exists,” Sydney GP Annie Marshall told the Sydney Morning Herald.

“The only way to get a patient out of your room in six minutes is to give them a piece of paper – for a scan, blood test or referral. You cannot assure a patient in six minutes that you have looked at them properly, that they have been listened to.”

The Chairman of the Royal Australian College of GPs SA & NT, Dr. Zakaria Baig said medical students are moving away from general practice due to the pressure and lack of financial incentives compared to specialty disciplines.

“They (medical students) have lost interest in general medicine. There are several reasons for this,” he said.

Medical students snub general practice because of the relatively poor pay

Medical students snub general practice because of the relatively poor pay

“(These include) the large discrepancy in the remuneration of a general practitioner and other specialists; While GPs are recognized as medical specialists, GPs are not paid at the same rate.

“Young doctors are often in relationships, there are no job opportunities for their partners when they go to the country … so they are not keen on going to the country unless there are special incentives.

‘[There are also] limited school opportunities for children of rural general practitioners. That’s why many move to the cities when their children grow up.”

In SA’s Mid-North region, the only medical clinic in the city of Peterborough ceased operations in June.

As a result, the city’s population had to make the 27-mile trek to Jamestown for medical care.

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Emma Colton

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