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Government plans 'will shift power to hospitals'

An Australian state government is launching a drive to headhunt GPs from the UK in an effort to fill gaps caused by the huge number of their doctors wanting to work here.

Senior medical officers from South Australia will visit London in October to take advantage of what they believe is a surplus of young GPs and other doctors over here.

Mike Rann, South Australian Premier, said the UK was 'fertile ground'.

He added: 'There appears to be a chronic over-supply of trained graduates, unable to find employment. We have exactly the opposite problem.'

Fiona Erafmus, head of certification for the Joint Committee on Postgraduate Training for General Practice, said there had been a huge increase in the number of applicants from overseas in the past five years, with Australian doctors leading the way.

The Australian Medical Association has opposed Premier Rann's initiative. It questioned the merit of taking on UK GPs who may need additional training to be able to work in Australian practices. It said the pressure to ensure new GPs fitted in to Australian practices would fall to existing GPs who were already under stress.

Why move to South

Australia?

Pros

·Sun and sand

·Only 1.4 million people in an area bigger than Texas

·Cheaper housing/cost of living

·Great vineyards

Cons

·Sunburn and sharks

·Isolation

·£40k a year lower earnings

·Losing the Ashes?

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