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Rural Locum Education Assistance Program - Guidelines

Rural LEAP provides financial assistance to urban general practitioners (GPs) who:

    undertake emergency medicine training
    commit to a total of 4 weeks (20 working days) paid general practice locum placement in a rural locality within a 2 year period.


To be eligible for payment under the Program applicants need to be:
  • a GP with:
    • general registration
    • Vocational Registration or Fellowship of either the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) or the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM)
  • currently practising in an urban locality.

The Australian Standard Geographical Classification – Remoteness Areas (ASGC-RA) is the classification system used to define eligible areas. Urban localities are classified ASGC-RA 1 and localities eligible for locum placements are in ASGC-RA 2-5.

This is a one off incentive with participants only able to access and obtain financial assistance to undertake emergency medicine training up to a total of $6,000.

Definition of general registration
More info on ASGC-RA

How to apply

Get the application form

Fill out the form and submit it to either the ACRRM or the RACGP.

Due to the limited number of places in the program, both Colleges assess applications based on when they are received.

Applicants also need to advise the Colleges:
  • when they intend to undertake training
  • what type of training they intend to undertake
  • when they intend to fulfil their locum commitment.

If the program is over subscribed all successful applicants who do not make the yearly round will be placed on a waiting list.

Eligible training

The ACRRM and the RACGP, in consultation with relevant external agencies, assess the eligibility of training for inclusion in the Program.

The list below provides examples of training courses. Other courses may be eligible and further information can be obtained from either t0he ACRRM or the RACGP:
  • Emergency Crisis Resource Management
  • Early Management of Severe Trauma (EMST)
  • Emergency Life Support (ELS) Course
  • Advanced Paediatric Life Support (APLS)
  • Rural Emergency Skills Training (REST)
  • Intermediate and/or Advanced Life Support
  • Emergency Medicine Crisis Management
  • Intermediate and/or Advanced Clinical Emergency Management Program (CEMP) workshops
  • HWQLD Rural Emergency Medicine Workshop
  • Soma Health Airway, CPR and Trauma Management Workshop

If these courses do not meet your needs, you may submit a learning plan as part of your application to be assessed.

Approved training must be undertaken within 12 months of registering for the Program. Participants who do not complete their training within 12 months of registration will be removed from the Program.

Value of incentive

The Rural LEAP payment is calculated on a maximum of $6,000 per GP for 3 days of upskilling activities. This is based on a rate of $2,000 per day.

Locum commitment

Participants in the Program are to undertake a total of 4 weeks (20 working days) paid locum placements within 2 years of completing eligible emergency medicine training. Placements undertaken prior to the completion of at least one day of eligible emergency medicine training will not count towards the locum commitment.

The 4 weeks (20 working days) can be broken up into shorter periods, however a total of 2 weeks (10 working days) must be completed in the first 12 months of completing the approved emergency medicine training.

Participants are required to undertake practice based GP locum positions located in ASGC-RA 2-5. These locum placements may be organised by the participant or the participant may seek assistance through various locum agencies.

When a participant has fulfilled the first 10 days of their locum commitment, they are required to advise the ACRRM or the RACGP. This can be through a statutory declaration from the practice where the locum was provided or a letter from the locum agency as verification. Similar documentary proof is required for the remaining 10 days of the locum commitment.

Payment of the incentive

Eligible GPs receive a payment once the Department of Human Services receives evidence from the ACRRM or the RACGP of the GP’s completion of the first 10 working days of the locum commitment.

Payments to GPs are made directly to a bank account nominated by the GP. The Department of Human Services also forwards a statement to the GP detailing payment. The Department of Human Services will also provide reminders to GPs to undertake their locum requirement by a required date.

Administration of the Program

The administration of the Program is jointly managed by the ACRRM and the RACGP.

The ACRRM and the RACGP are responsible for assessing the eligibility of GPs and of training.

The Department of Human Services is responsible for maintaining a register of eligible GPs and for making payments to GPs on completion of the first 10 working days of the locum commitment. The Department of Human Services is also responsible for tracking the 2 year period for participants to undertake their locum requirement.

Program contact details

Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM)

GPO Box 2507
Phone: 1800 223 226

Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP)

National Rural Faculty
15 Gover Street
Phone: 1800 636 764