There have been a few significant and positive changes around DPA in the last few months, as the Health department continues to receive feedback about the increasing shortage of GPs in many parts of Australia. The recent inquiry in NSW into doctor shortages also further highlighted the challenges.
One significant announcement was that practices who are currently in a Non-DPA location and struggling to attract GPs, can request a review of their DPA status. Reviews have not been possible in the past. At this stage the review application process does look rather difficult and cumbersome, but it is refreshing to have this option available.
We are now seeing some of these reviews being approved. This is in addition to the new change as of January 2022, that locations that are MMM 3+ will automatically be given DPA status.
Some locations that have had DPA status given back to them include:
- Port Macquarie, NSW
- Wyong-Gorokan, NSW
- Lithgow, NSW
- Toukley-Budgewoi, NSW
- Hervey Bay, QLD
- Toowoomba, QLD
- Mackay, QLD
- Gympie, QLD
- Ipswich, QLD
- Noosa hinterland, QLD
- Cairns, QLD
- Morayfield, QLD
- Shepparton, VIC
- Gisborne, VIC
- Two Rocks-Yanchep, WA
- Mandurah, WA
- Rockingham, WA
- Bunbury, WA
- Kwinana, WA
View the current list and monitor it for updates….
These changes are in effect until the next full review of the DPA map on 1 July 2022 when we hope there will be more positive changes.
You can request a review of your DPA status through your Rural Workforce Agency under the following reasons:
- Changes to services (doctor retirements, other practice closures)
- Patient demographic changes (socio-economic factors, aboriginal population)
- Absence of services (difficulties with recruitment)
- We would suggest reviewing the rejected DPA locations listed on the table as the reasons for the rejection are outlined. These may help inform your DPA application.