Key messages

  • The People in Health policy initiative has been established to support, strengthen and expand Victoria’s health and mental health workforces.
  • The initiative represents the Victorian Government’s continuing investment and ongoing commitment to develop the health workforce, with a focus on ensuring health professionals in Victoria receive the best education and training at every stage of their career.
  • The initiative will ensure Victoria’s health professionals are equipped with the best skills, competencies and attributes to deliver high-quality healthcare for all Victorians.

Victoria’s health workforce

Two-thirds of Victoria’s health spending is on its workforce. The Victorian health system employs more than 130,000 people, with approximately 77,000 individuals employed in the Victorian public health system.

Our health workforce is ageing – 4.6 per cent of the health services workforce will be aged over 65 years by 2022. This means that within seven years Victoria will lose many of its experienced health professionals and practitioners to retirement.

Victoria’s health workforce is also growing. Victorian health services accommodate up to 10,000 new graduates into the workforce each year. These new health and medical graduates are essential to the longevity of our health workforce.

Victoria’s investment in its health workforce development is underpinned by the best practice principles:

  • Capacity – to ensure health workforce planning and development, including clinical education and training, is delivered across a range of settings throughout metropolitan, rural and regional locations and across the public hospital system, the private health system, primary care organisations (such as general practices) and the community health sector.
  • Quality – provides oversight and quality assurance for clinical education and training. It ensures that education and training supports patient care and meets health service delivery needs, and optimises the use of both statewide and health service education and training resources.
  • Innovation – Victoria’s training system recognises that future generations absorb information and skills from a range of sources. The use of technology to deliver clinical education and training enables Victoria to continue to provide high-quality programs across the state while enabling the best use of training infrastructure and staff time.
  • Effective governance – government investment brings together our partners to plan and resource workforce development activity to deliver the best outcomes.

People in Health initiative

People in Health is designed strengthen the way the government supports health workforce development at all stages of health careers. The initiative tasks the government with providing a safe, competent and innovative health workforce, and ensuring there is the right number of health professionals and practitioners in the right places.

Under People in Health, Victoria’s health professionals will continue to receive the best education and training by:

  • building strong partnerships across government, the health and education sectors and professional bodies
  • funding clinical placements for professional-entry students, investing in successful transition to practice and postgraduate and specialist training
  • supporting health professionals (from students to specialists) to access high-quality and innovative training and workforce development opportunities to ensure Victoria continues to provide excellent health services
  • targeting areas that require the greatest support and funding more workforce development opportunities in rural and regional settings, as well as in the growth areas of Melbourne.

The Victorian Government’s efforts to develop the health workforce are focused on four main areas:

  • students from the university and vocational education and training (VET) sectors
  • entry-to-work including internships and graduate programs
  • postgraduate and specialist training
  • up-skilling and continuing professional education.

Further information

Further information is available from the People in Health policy initiative.


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