What would attract general practice trainees into rural practice in New Zealand?

The New Zealand medical journal

PubMedID: 12386668

Hill D, Martin I, Farry P. What would attract general practice trainees into rural practice in New Zealand?. N Z Med J. 2002;115(1161):U161.
AIM
The shortage of rural doctors is acknowledged worldwide. This study aimed to identify incentives that would attract doctors into rural practice in New Zealand.

METHODS
Registrars and seminar attendees of the General Practice Vocational Training Programme in 2000 and 2001 were surveyed using focus groups and subsequent questionnaire to find what conditions might attract young general practitioners (GPs) into rural practice in New Zealand. Themes identified included lifestyle, family issues, on-call work, financial incentives, career opportunities, training, and study leave/holidays.

RESULTS
Of the 140 questionnaires sent out, 91 were returned (65% response rate). Twenty nine per cent of respondents said they were unlikely to go into rural practice, despite a comprehensive incentive scheme; 8% said they would go into rural practice even if no incentive scheme were offered. The remaining 63% were more likely to go into rural practice if an incentive scheme were offered. The incentives most favoured were: reduction in on-call work; guaranteed time out of the practice; and consideration of options for partners and children.

CONCLUSION
This study indicates that two thirds of trainee GPs might consider going into rural practice if an appropriate incentive scheme were available.