Mrs Armitage (Launceston) to the Acting Leader of Government in the Legislative Council, Hon Leonie Hiscutt MLC -
Leader, could you advise, firstly - I realise you may have to take these questions on notice - how long have the four positions been vacant? Are they vacant registrar, resident or intern positions? With the issue last year with late advertising of registrar positions, meaning that doctors were not able to accept positions until it closed, many doctors took positions elsewhere. Is this the reason those four positions are vacant?
Hon Leonie Hiscutt MLC -
I am advised by the Tasmanian Health Service that there is an annual advertising campaign for all Registrar positions and whilst applicants may accept offers in the first instance at a hospital, it is common around Australia for late withdrawal of acceptance. This can occur as applicants apply to a number of hospitals and may receive late offers at alternative hospitals, which they prefer for a range of reasons, including family preferences.
There were 2 applicants considered suitable for interview and again it is common practice for applicants to have applied to a variety of positions across Australia and overseas. Applicants then have a choice of roles and it is not an infrequent occurrence for withdrawal of application or declining an offer again for a variety of reasons.
While the withdrawal of applicants is disappointing, further steps to recruit to the endocrinology positions are being pursued, to end a decade long service gap. The Government's commitment to build confidence in the health system and attract more specialist doctors will continue.