Questions over Government's GP bonding scheme

The effectiveness of the Government's GP bonding scheme is under question.

It follows reports the South Canterbury District Health Board is having difficulties hiring and retaining GPs.

Labour MP Maryan Street says the GP bonding scheme, where graduates are given relief with their student loans in exchange for working in New Zealand, was supposed to address this type of problem.

"If this isn't working to get GPs into those areas, then it's necessary for the minister to think again about what needs to be provided for these communities."

Ms Street says while the scheme's worked for nurses, the same can't be said as far as GPs are concerned.

"That scheme's been going for three years now and the total of doctors who have been paid on that voluntary bonding scheme has been seven.

"And that's not going to be enough for continuous care being applied across rural communities."

- Newstalk ZB

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