The Age 20 June 2012
Almost 500 medical graduates are expected to be left jobless next year because of a shortage of internships and, in some cases, full-fee paying international students will be given preference over Australian residents for positions in Victorian hospitals.
In Victoria, 118 graduates are expected to miss out unless they are accepted in other states and territories. But competition has intensified after the Victorian government brought in a controversial system that gives international students who have studied in Victoria priority over Australian students who have studied outside the state. If other states and territories follow suit, it increases fears about a training crisis in Australia in which hundreds of medical students could have to look abroad for internships. Australian Medical Students Association president James Churchill:
We’re essentially creating doctors who cannot go on and practise in Australia to meet our community’s health needs.
The Age suggests that universities lobbied to secure internships for Victorian trained international students, who pay about $200,000 for courses at Victorian universities.
National Union of Students president Donherra Walmsley says all medical students should be able to get an internship, noting that
… international student fees … heavily subsidise course delivery for students in Australia.