MSCV has been concerned with the increase in medical student numbers with 444 new Victorian medical graduates in 2007 expanding to 743 in 2012. While MSCV works to ensure that medical schools are hospitals are able to deal with this surge in numbers and maintain and enhance medical education and training, there are further concerns regarding employment after medical school for our members.
In the state budget released in May 2008, MSCV was pleased to see that funding has been granted for an increase in internship places so that they are commensurate with the number of Victorian domestic medical graduates in 2011. This increase will be rolled out in a stepwise manner with 45 new places each year from 2009 until 2011 and 96 new intern places in 2012 bringing the total number of internship places to 690. In addition, there has also been an increase in funded Hospital Medical Officer (HMO) positions with funding for 151 positions by 2012 (although many HMO positions are currently funded by hospitals (based on need) rather than the state. There are many more HMO positions than internship places).
Funding has also been granted for new initiatives to expand internship places into alternative settings and areas of workforce need. There is also additional funding for Medical Education Officers (MEO) who coordinate intern and HMO education programs. In addition, funding has been granted for support programs for International Medical Graduates.
Currently MSCV sits on the Postgraduate Medical Reference Group – the advisory body to the state government regarding prevocational training that strongly advocated for the urgent need for increased internships.
Issues discussed include:
· Expanding capacity to enable an increase in internship places
· Integration, support of employment of International Medical Graduates
· The role of Medical Education Officers
· Fulfilling areas of workforce need