The FNQ Division of General Practice covers one of the most geographically and demographically diverse regions of Australia. Our “patch” extends across 266, 462 square kilometres – an area larger than the state of Victoria. From Tully to Thursday Island, it includes the urban base of Cairns and the rural heartland of the Atherton Tableland and Cape York Peninsula.
The residential population of the area covered by the FNQ Division is 269,650 of which 12.3 per cent is indigenous people and 15 per cent from non-English speaking backgrounds (according to most recent Australian Bureau of Statistics data).
Covering such an extensive and diverse area, the FNQ Division works hard to represent and assist general practitioners and health care professionals at the frontline of delivering primary health care to our region.
GPs in regional and rural areas must overcome the challenge of isolation and limited support services available compared with their capital city colleagues. The Division seeks to support provincial and rural doctors by providing regular and accessible Continuing Medical Education (CME) and professional development opportunities as well as other programs such as Rural Primary Health Services.
The FNQ Division service area corresponds almost identically with three Queensland Health Service Districts – Cairns and Hinterland, Cape York and Torres & Northern Peninsula Area.
It covers three Rural & Remote Metropolitan Area (or RRMA) classifications:
- Category 3 and 4 (Outer Regional) – includes Cairns and Northern Beaches
- Category 5 (Other Rural) – includes Tully, Innisfail, Malanda, Mossman and Port Douglas
- Category 6 (Remote Centre) – includes Mareeba and Kuranda
- Category 7 (Other Remote) – includes Cooktown, Weipa and Ravenshoe