Funding Opportunity for International Medical Students

The Department of Health and Ageing has requested a submission from all jurisdictions in relation to funds required for the Up skilling Program in 2010. This program was initiated a few years ago to support international medical specialists (IMS) to gain their specialists qualifications. Tasmania did not have any positions under this program in 2008 &2009. However, we can still apply for funds to provide support to IMS for 2010. The use of these funds may include payment of salary for the IMS; costs associated with backfilling the IMS position while the candidate attends relevant educational activities, travel expenses to and from such activities, mentoring support and so on.

The Commonwealth advised that they expect all submissions by the end of February, however, later submission (less than 2 weeks overdue) will also be considered. I encourage you to communicate this information to all relevant people and take advantage of this important opportunity

When submitting a request for funds to support International Medical Specialists to gain College Fellowship, please advise:

1. the level of funds sought;
2. the number of IMSs involved;
3. IMS details, including specialty and facility where IMS will undertake training; and
4. proof of Australian Medical Council accreditation and evidence from the relevant medical specialist college that the IMS is required to undertake a further 12 (or 24) months of training before being able to apply for Fellowship.

Information in relation to points 3 and 4, if not available at the time of submission, may be supplied after funding approval.

Given that 2010 is a transition year for the Specialist Training Program (STP) it is the intention of the Department to continue supporting the upskilling element of the STP to the same level as last year i.e. 2009. The Up skilling program to date has provided support to overseas trained specialists to gain their specialist qualifications in a timely manner. As such, all jurisdictions have been contacted to provide a submission for their 2010 requirements. Please note that in 2009, there were no Up skilling candidates in Tasmania. An earlier email sent by the Department in December 2009 to all jurisdictions referred to the management of up skilling elements of the program for 2010.

The advisory body for the STP, the Enhanced Medical Education Advisory Committee is currently considering the best way to continue support for overseas trained specialists and fully integrate this into the STP from 2011 onwards.

However, for 2010, the use of these funds may include payment of salary for IMS; costs associated with backfilling the IMS position while the candidate attends relevant educational activities, travel expenses to and from such activities, mentoring support and so on.

If you have any queries regarding this program please contact Padmaja Jha Director, Specialist Training Program, Department of Health and Ageing on (02) 6289 4567 or email padmaja.jha@health.gov.au

Submissions should be sent to olga.danilova@dhhs.tas.gov.au in medical workforce at the Office of the Chief Health Office by 27/02/10