Specialist Training Program

Department of Health - Specialist Training Program

The Specialist Training Program (STP) aims to improve the quality of the future specialist workforce and have a positive influence on future workforce distribution by providing specialty registrars (trainees) with exposure to a broader range of healthcare settings. These include settings located outside of traditional metropolitan teaching hospitals, such as the private sector, community health, Aboriginal medical services and in rural, regional and remote areas of Australia. 

The intended outcomes and objectives of the STP are: 

  • enhanced capacity of system to provide high quality specialty training by facilitating required accredited specialist training experiences;
  • increased quality accredited training posts in “expanded” healthcare settings which are supported and integrated into specialty training programs and networks that build overall system training capacity; and
  • Improved distribution of specialty training that is better matched to identified or projected medical specialist medical workforce need.

The STP commenced in 2010 and is delivered through 13 specialist medical colleges under Standard Grant Agreements held with the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care. There are now around 950 training places funded through the Program across all colleges.

RANZCR receives a set allocation of funding for posts from the Department of Health and Aged Care and currently has 50 posts implemented across Australia in clinical radiology and radiation oncology. Salary contribution is available for all participating sites under the Specialist Training Placements and Support (STPS) funding stream. Sites located in regional and private settings can also apply to the College for additional support loadings.

Training posts are allocated through a Reserve List Process, which is administered by the Department of Health and Aged Care in conjunction with each state jurisdiction and colleges. Successful sites remain on the respective colleges’ reserve lists until posts can be formally implemented. RANZCR posts must have network support to be accredited for training and vacant positions available under the Grant Agreement to progress.

Further to establishing specialist training posts, the Program also provides funding for a range of support activities, including developing system-wide education and infrastructure projects to enhance training opportunities for eligible trainees.

Specialist Training Program - Integrated Rural Training Pipeline

In 2015, the Department announced that at a cost of $93.8 million over four years, additional contributions to build a sustainable Australia-trained future medical workforce for regional, rural and remote communities would be introduced through an STP - Integrated Rural Training Pipeline (IRTP).

RANZCR receives a set allocation of posts to fill and currently has five posts implemented under this model.

STP - IRTP has different eligibility criteria to the STPS model, including:

  • STP - IRTP trainees must spend at least two thirds of their training time in a Modified Monash Model (MM) 2-7 setting;
  • The MM 2-7 primary site would hold the STP - IRTP agreement with the College and become the ‘base’ site for the trainee;
  • The base site may rotate the trainee through other MM 2-7 sites to support the trainee in fulfilling their training requirements;
  • The trainee may spend no more than a third of total training time within metropolitan MM 1 settings to support the trainee fulfilling their training requirements;
  • Trainees must be supported by the base site to complete their training, including assistance with travel and accommodation during rotations;
  • To ensure commitment to a regional placement, candidates must meet predetermined criteria such as having a rural or regional background and/or having attended a rural clinical school or regional university. Regardless, a trainee undertaking an STP - IRTP post must have demonstrated a genuine commitment to working in a rural/regional area (MM 2-7 locations) post fellowship.

Similar to the STPS stream, training posts are allocated through the Reserve List Process, which are typically administered annually by the Department of Health and Aged Care.

Training More Specialist Doctors In Tasmania

The Training More Specialist Doctors in Tasmania measure (Tasmanian Project) provides funding to increase the number of doctors to become specialists in Tasmania. The Tasmanian Project aims to support approved specialty training to be undertaken and completed in Tasmania and support the training and retention of specialist doctors in the Tasmanian health system.

RANZCR receives salary support funding for two FTE trainee positions and one 0.5 FTE supervisory position.

STP Funding Info Sheet 2023

View STP Operational Framework

To find out more about the Program and funding opportunities through RANZCR, please contact the STP team at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Visit the Department of Health and Aged Care’s website for further information.