How to apply for the Strengthening Medicare GP Grants Program

The Australian Government has committed $220 million over two years (2022-23 to 2023-24) to the Strengthening Medicare – General Practice (GP) Grants Program. This fantastic program aims to expand patient access and support safe, accessible, quality primary care for general practices and eligible Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations (ACCHOs).

Who can apply?

Both general practices and ACCHOs that deliver general practice services and are not owned or operated by a state, territory, or local government agency or body are eligible to apply. For a health service to meet the definition of a general practice, it must follow the RACGP definition, have GP services predominantly of a general practice nature, and be capable of meeting all mandatory indicators in the RACGP Standards for General Practices (5th edition).

When and How to Participate?

The program is open from 21 April 2023. Primary Health Networks (PHNs) and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) will work in partnership to administer and manage the program. They will send correspondence (including a grant agreement form) directly to general practices and eligible ACCHOs, inviting their participation in the program. Most should be notified by the end of April.

Grant Amounts: $25,000, $35,000 or $50,000

Participating practices and ACCHOs will receive a one-off grant of either $25,000, $35,000, or $50,000. To determine the grant amount, organisations will be assessed based on their accreditation status against the RACGP Standards for General Practices and their practice size, as determined by the Department of Health and Aged Care’s Medicare GPFTE 2021-22 financial year (FY) data.

What can the Grants be Used For?

Grants can be used to invest in innovation, training, equipment, and minor capital works across three investment streams:

  1. Enhancing digital health capability – Fast-track the benefits of a connected healthcare system and prepare for future standards. For example, getting a Cubiko subscription for your nursing staff and GPs to optimise practice performance and enhance digital health capabilities.

  2. Upgrading infection prevention and control arrangements – Support the safe, face-to-face assessment of patients with symptoms of potentially infectious respiratory diseases (e.g., COVID, influenza).
  3. Maintaining or achieving accreditation against the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Standards for General Practice (5th Edition) – Promote quality and safety in general practice. This could include subscriptions to PracticeHub or Cubiko which can assist in achieving accreditation.

The program offers flexibility for general practices and eligible ACCHOs to fund activities within the three investment streams, addressing their unique needs.

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