Although international medical graduates (IMGs) make up a substantial part of the Australian rural general practice workforce, most research on factors associated with rural practice has focused on Australian medical graduates (AMGs). This study aimed to determine whether there were differences between IMGs and AMGs in terms of these factors. Registrars in training and recent fellows (Fellowship of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners/ Fellowship of the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine) who participated in training in rural and regional Australia were surveyed about practice models and rural practice. Almost two-thirds of participants were practicing or intending to practice in rural areas, with no difference between AMGs and IMGs. None of the variables associated with rural practice for AMGs was found to be associated with rural practice in IMGs in univariate binary regression analysis. Two key variables that are strongly associated with rural medical practice in the current literature, namely rural background and rural exposure, were not significant predictors of rural practice among IMGs. Due to the significant number of IMGs in regional training programs, any future incentives designed to improve rural recruitment and retention need to address factors relevant to IMGs.


international medical graduates, medical workforce, ownership, recruitment and retention, rural

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