|Visiting Medical Officers (VMOs) augment full-time medical specialist services by providing speciality input in a number of disciplines throughout the state and advanced specialties at major metropolitan and provincial hospitals.
Not withstanding their private sector activity, VMOs are vital to the continued operation of the Queensland public health system. There are about 800 employee VMOs – working an average of 8-9 hours per week. Although this is a small component of the Queensland Health medical workforce, it is a vital one, with VMOs providing the sole speciality service in a number of disciplines in many rural and regional facilities. In metropolitan hospitals, VMOs have a significant clinical and teaching role.
New VMO Agreement
In February 2012, Queensland Health and Australian Medical Association (AMA) Queensland finalised an agreement for Visiting Medical Officers VMO Agreement 2011. This agreement covers employee VMOs. The overwhelming majority of VMOs are directly emplyed by Queensland Health. VMOs are a key and valued employee group and are integral to the achievement of strategic priorities.
Rural VMO Recruitment and Retention Fund
Following the signing of the VMO Agreement 2011 a Ministerial Taskforce Committee met and agreed to establish the "Rural VMO Recruitment and Retention Fund". The fund formed part of the outcome of negotiations for terms and conditions for VMOs and represents an endeavour in the VMO Agreement 2011 to assist in recruiting VMOs and retain their services.
For more information see the Rural VMO Recruitment and Retention Fund Guidelines.