GPs should be paid one-fifth more to treat their patients, according to a peak doctors’ group.
The Royal Australian College of GPs wants a loading of at least 18.5 per cent applied to all scheduled fees for their consultations, to bring them into line with those for specialists.
It also wants a new category of consultation, known as a level E for appointments lasting 60 minutes or more, with a government rebate of $163. The proposal is part of an RACGP wish list in its submission to the Federal Government’s task force review of the Medicare Benefits Schedule.
“Disparities between scheduled fees for GP and other medical specialist consultations should be addressed,” the college said in its submission.
“There is currently no support through the MBS for GPs to spend more than 60 minutes with their patients.”
An 18.5 per cent loading would increase the MBS rebate for a level B consultation from about $37 to about $44, while a level D consult, currently the longest appointment funded, would attract a rebate of about $125, up from $105.
It comes as data from the latest Good Universities Guide shows doctors trained at the University of WA earn more than graduates from other medical schools, with an average salary of $72,000 a year.
They are followed by doctors from the University of Notre Dame, who earn on average $69,000 a year. Graduates from the University of Newcastle, Canberra’s Australian National University and the University of Melbourne earn the least, or $60,000 on average.
But WA medical graduates were less impressed with their education overall — 74 per cent of UWA students say they were satisfied with the quality of their education, compared with 94 per cent of graduates from Flinders University in Adelaide.
This article originally appeared in The West Australian – Royal Australian College of GPS wants 18.5 per cent pay increase per consultation