VHA report: Responding to workforce pressures in rural and regional Victoria
April 6, 2022
Following the Rural Regional Roundtable (RRR) held on 15 February 2022, the VHA has developed a report exploring the complex challenges of workforce by drawing on both academic evidence and the collective insights of over 50 senior leaders from across health services in rural and regional Victoria.
Rural and regional health services face unique workforce challenges that are exacerbated by geographical location and scale of service. Challenges include housing availability, flexible workforce models, and competitive remuneration which create added complexity to recruitment and retention.
Policy ideas can be gleaned from the report’s case studies that highlight innovations that seek to both stimulate workforce pathways and protect the current pool of staff.
There is no ‘silver bullet’ to address the mounting workforce pressures facing the public healthcare sector. The pandemic has laid bare the cracks in the current workforce structure, with health services navigating the complexities of locally sustaining and growing a skilled workforce to meet service demand.
The themes explored in this report will act as the foundation for the VHA’s policy development for 2022 and beyond. VHA’s policy and advocacy team look forward to continuing to work with VHA members and extend an invitation to key stakeholders and external researchers to support the policy development process and welcome further ideas and insights.