Contracted Medical Practitioner Arrangements

The importance of our Contracted Medical Practitioners

  • Contracted Medical Practitioners (CMP) are key providers of medical services to the WA Country Health Service (WACHS). WACHS currently engages more than 1300 Medical Practitioners through the Medical Services Agreements (MSA) engagements.
  • The MSA arrangements can apply to a variety of temporary or sporadic locum placements including General Practitioners, Specialists and Non-Specialists and Hospital Based Medical Practitioners.
  • CMPs are not employed by WACHS, but rather independent contractors on MSA’s which are individually negotiated between the Medical Practitioner concerned and the WACHS region. 

Medical Services Agreement

MSA arrangements

The engagement of Medical Practitioners under contracts for services, Medical Services Agreements (MSAs), are governed by the following policies:

  1. Engagement of Medical Practitioners under Contracts for Services Policy (MP 0079/18) 
  2. Credentialing and Defining Scope of Clinical Practice for Medical Practitioners Standard which forms part of the Credentialing and Defining the Scope of Clinical Practice Policy (MP 0084/18) 
  3. Disputes about the professional conduct of a Contracted Medical Practitioner engaged under a Medical Services Agreement Policy (MP 0083/18)

These policies deal comprehensively with Contracted Medical Practitioner (CMP) terms of engagement, management of disputes about CMP professional conduct matters and the credentialing of all medical practitioners, and collectively supersede those corresponding elements of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Minister for Health and the Boards of Management and the Australian Medical Association (Western Australia) Incorporated in respect of Clinical Privileges, Conduct and Governance in Western Australian Government Hospitals and Health Services 2015

MSA structure and payment arrangements

There are two different types of MSA contract templates which adopt the specific details of the Health Service Provider and the CMPs Scope of Practice:

1. Day Rate Medical Services Agreement Template 

CMPs are unable to subcontract medical services or bill for non-public patients under Day Rate contract arrangements.

The Day Rate MSA is structured as follows:

    • Cover page and Recitals pages
    • Standard Contractual Obligations and Conditions pages
    • Signatories page
    • Schedules 1 to 3 which contain the details, service requirements and obligations specific to your contract.  

2. Fee For Service Medical Services Agreement Template with subcontractors

The FFS (Fee For Service) MSA allows for the CMP to apply to the Health Service for approval to subcontract the provision of medical services (in accordance with the scope of practice within their contract).

The FFS MSA is structured as follows:

    • Cover page and Recitals pages
    • Standard Contractual Obligations and Conditions pages
    • Signatories page
    • Schedules 1 to 3 which contain the details, service requirements and obligations specific to your contract.  
    • Schedule 4 includes a Form of Application to Subcontract Medical Services by which the CMP nominates the individual medical practitioners (subcontractor/s) who will perform the medical services detailed in the MSA. This application consists of four parts: 
      1. Personal Details of the Subcontractor including name and contact information, AHPRA registration, and the sites and services to be subcontracted
      2. Details of the CMP who holds the MSA and their nomination of the proposed Subcontractor
      3. Approval of the Health Service Provider to accept the Subcontractors’ engagement
      4. The terms and conditions that the Subcontractor must accept.

Information on FFS may be found at the Department of Health Website WA Government Medical Services Schedule. WACHS MSAs are negotiated at a regional level and all inquiries should be directed to your Regional Director Medical Services office. 

Associated requirements:

  • Medical Indemnity - Non-salaried Medical Practitioner Indemnity is provided as part of the MSA arrangements.  More information can be obtained from the Department of Health Website under Medical Indemnity.
  • Credentialing and Scope of Practice - All Medical Practitioners who are contracted under an MSA are required to have been credentialed through CredWA (eCredential) with a defined scope of practice to provide approved medical services at the hospital nominated in the MSA, before commencing work.  The WA Country Health Service (WACHS) has a formal process of credentialing and defining the scope of clinical practice prior to appointment.  Details of requirements, processes and procedures can be obtained from your local Regional Director Medical Services’ office.

  • Contractor Engagement Plan – All CMP’s engaged through an MSA are required to undertake regular review and assessment by a supervisor through a Contractor Engagement Plan (CEP) form. Clause 3.5 of the MSA details this requirement and copies of this CEP form can be found here **

Regional Director Medical Services office contact numbers:

  • Goldfields - (08) 9080 5802
  • Great Southern - (08) 9892 2682
  • Kimberley - (08) 9195 2483
  • Midwest - (08) 9956 8742
  • Pilbara - (08) 9174 1645
  • South West - (08) 9781 2325
  • Wheatbelt - (08) 9621 0710

Country Health Innovation (CHI) incentives

Country Health Innovation (CHI) financial incentive funding is obtained through the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) Royalties for Regions (RfR) Program.

In 2018, a revised program, known as the County Health Innovation was introduced to ensure provision of medical services and patient care remains contemporary and continues to meet the diverse needs of people living in regional Western Australia, WACHS is driving new and innovative health approaches and ways to deliver emergency, acute, maternity and newborn services across the expansive network of WACHS hospitals and health services.

Country Health Innovation has a limited number of incentives that are currently distributed to GPs within the regional catchment areas.

The incentives are as follows:

  • Emergency Department incentive
  • Procedural incentive
  • Location incentive
  • Small town GP incentive
  • Aboriginal Health community incentive

All CHI queries can be directed to:

CHI Business Support Officer

T: (08) 6553 0846 E: WACHS.CHIIncentives@health.wa.gov.au

Last Updated: 30/06/2021