Workforce Planning and Prioritisation (WPP) Program

GPEx is leading the Australian Government’s program aimed at tackling the critical shortage of GPs in South Australia.

The contract for the Workforce Planning and Prioritisation (WPP) Program in South Australia was awarded in late 2022 to a GPEx-led consortium, with GPEx’s consortium partners being Adelaide Primary Health Network (PHN) and the South Australian Department for Health and Wellbeing.

Through the WPP Program which is funded until the end of 2025, GPEx is leveraging its strengths in primary care to provide the Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) and the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) with independent, evidence-based advice to inform where registrar placements would be most effective, as part of the Australian General Practice Training (AGPT) Program.

Our work involves engaging with GP practices, Aboriginal Medical Services and local communities, and combining this local intelligence with workforce and training capacity data to shape our recommendations to the Department and address current and future GP workforce needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the GP WPP program, and why was it established?

The GP Workforce Planning and Prioritisation (GP WPP) program was established by the Department of Health and Aged Care to support the transition to college-led GP training which occurred on 1 February 2023. Under the program, GP WPP organisations provide advice to the Department and GP Colleges on planning and prioritisation of GP training placements to meet current and future GP workforce needs. The GP WPP Program is currently funded to December 2025.

Who are the GP WPP organisations?

GP WPP organisations have been established to provide advice and analysis on workforce need and training capacity across each jurisdiction to the Department and the GP colleges. There are a total of six GP WPP consortiums delivering this activity. Each is overseen by a GP WPP lead organisation. In South Australia, the consortium is led by GPEx with consortium partners Adelaide Primary Health Network (PHN) and SA Department for Health and Wellbeing.

What is the role of a GP WPP organisation?

The key role for the GP WPP organisations is to undertake analysis and provide advice that will guide GP college selection and allocation processes. This involves stakeholder engagement at the jurisdictional and regional level to gain intelligence and test assumptions. The GP WPP consortiums will also provide advice to the Department on the GP catchments in greatest need of general practitioner services, to inform the distribution of AGPT registrars.

What are the aims of the GP WPP program?

The GP WPP program supports college-led general practice training by providing independent, evidence-based data and analysis to inform the distribution and placement of registrars training on the AGPT Program.

The GP WPP program will:

  • document training pathways in each PHN region, which will assist GP colleges to support registrars with suitable training options.
  • provide advice and analysis on the training capacity in each PHN region, which will assist the GP colleges to match registrars to suitable training placements and inform training capacity-building activities.

Provide analysis on current and future community needs for general practice services, which will inform the AGPT distribution targets set by the Department and met by the GP Colleges.

How does the Program impact the allocation of GP registrar placements?

The GP WPP program is providing advice to inform the future allocation and distribution of registrar placements. It is not mandating where placements must occur; the placement of registrars remains a decision for the GP colleges who will continue to make placement and selection decisions based on safe, quality care and training.

There will be no requirement to immediately place registrars in every GP catchment that is found to be in need of services. A core principle of the GP WPP program is that the implementation of distribution targets must not compromise a safe and positive registrar experience.

How will the GP WPP program work towards meeting community needs if it is not specifying where registrars must be placed?

Distribution targets will require the GP colleges to increase overall registrar training activity across GP catchments that are categorised as most in need. There is an expectation that the GP colleges will make plans to build or improve training capacity in high priority catchments where registrars have not been placed. This approach will give the colleges flexibility in how they meet distribution targets.

When will the GP WPP program consortiums release reports publicly?

The Department and GP WPPOs are working together on a plan to publish key findings and recommendations in each GP WPP region, which they anticipate will occur in the first half of 2024.

Who is in the GPEx GP WPP Steering Committee in South Australia?

GPEx has established the GP WPP South Australian Steering Group, which brings together a network of key industry representatives with the aim of overseeing the WPP program and its deliverables, sharing expertise and frontline insights and helping to support a consistent, state-wide approach to identified priorities and challenges. The group consists of members from the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine, Adelaide PHN, Country SA PHN, SA Department for Health and Wellbeing, Rural Doctors Workforce Agency, Flinders University, University of Adelaide, Royal Flying Doctor Service, Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association, Rural Doctors’ Association of South Australia, Australian Medical Association South Australia, SA Rural Generalist Coordination Unit, Remote Vocational Training Scheme, and representatives from both metro and rural LHNs.

How can I contribute to the GP WPP program?

GPEx and other WPP consortiums are required to collaborate with existing workforce planning organisations and local stakeholders, including with jurisdictional health departments and local health departments, to test analysis and conclusions.

Strong local and regional engagement provides a platform for joint local planning, aims to foster regional community buy-in, and will ensure local insights are reflected in the advice GPEx provides within reporting.

GPEx is interested in engaging with local GP Practices, Aboriginal Medical Services, and other community members to gather firsthand insights into the current state of the workforce, with a particular interest in understanding workforce challenges faced in the area, training experience, and overall community needs. To find out more about this work or share your experiences with workforce challenges and solutions, please feel free to reach out to us at

Meet the Team

India-Rose Avery
Program Lead

Prof. Jeanette Ward
Clinical Advisor

Matthew Vincent
Data Lead

Dana Esposito
Engagement Lead

News and Updates

For More Information

If you have any questions about the WPP Program, or would like to provide your local insights please get in touch or call 1300 473 972.