Thank you those who responded. This year a record 150 doctors replied to the workforce survey. Nine were General Practitioners, 73 were Fellows of the College and this year we divided registrars into senior (34 replies) and junior (16 replies). This represents about 3/8 of RNZCUC members but may not be directly comparable to last year’s sample as the respondents may not be the same people.

The survey was anonymous, and we do rely on the honesty and maths of responders. Consequently, educated guesses as to the meaning of some answers had to be made.

Of the workforce 62 were contractors, 83 employees and six had financial interests in the clinic.

To provide a valid comparison, salaried doctors were converted to an hourly rate, taking into account their hours, base salary, annual leave declared, Kiwisaver, ACC levy, and assuming employer paying Indemnity Insurance, College membership, MCNZ fees and CME pro rata. Sick leave although asked was not taken into calculations.

The question relating to “After Hours” naturally covered a number of areas (evening, night, weekend, statutory holiday). Where specified the Statutory Holiday payments/time in lieu were excluded.

Any numbers in parentheses not otherwise specified are those from last year.

The practice definitions in the survey were not highly detailed, leaving it up to the respondents to decide on the most appropriate labels for their situation,

  • City= Central City
  • Town= regional town
  • Suburban = Not central urban area
  • GP attach = attached but not integrated
  • GP integrated = GP and UC staff and cases mix
  • ED = DHB ED 
  • Attach DHB = Urgent Care attached to DHB Facility

Working hours

Average hours per week (not including on call) in 2022 were 30.375 similar to 31.4 in the previous survey. 10% of doctors reported an average work week in excess of 40 hours. The mean for weekly working hours was for employees, 32.1 (32),working longer hours  than contractors 27.73 (30.2)

After hours loading

Overall, the after hours loading was about 10%, however it is notable that many employees had no after hours loading leading one to assume it was built into their salary.

Urgent care registrars

Base hourly rate varied ($86 to $152) per hour with a mean of $123.21($112.75). In contrast to last year, employed doctors in general had significantly higher hourly rates. In terms of type of clinic, city based stand alone clinics were on average paid more. After hours rate averaged about $146.

Senior urgent care registrars

Interestingly Senior Registrars’ average hourly rate was less than that of the more junior ones with a mean of $121 (Range $64 to$172)  and an after hours average of about $132.  Here Suburban Urgent Care Doctors integrated with a GP practice had highest hourly rate.

Fellows (vocationally registered without management Role)

For those Urgent Care and GP Fellows not in a management role the equivalent hourly rate varied between $100 and $176 per hour with an average of $133 (129) per hour. After hours rates averaged $158(146) but it is notable that almost all after hours loadings were less than 30%.

In general, contracted doctors had higher hourly rates than employees $134 vs $131 ($135 vs $124/hr) although contracted rates appear to have fallen slightly over the year.

Clinical/ Medical Directors

CD response to this survey was much smaller than previous years but according to this survey Clinical/Medical Directors as employees have had an increase in average pay (from $142 to $161 per hour) while contractors increased from $134 to $189 per hour on last year. The locality figures below may not be representative due to small sample size, but “small town” clinics paid most while there was little difference between clinic types. In general CDs did not appear to benefit much from after hours loading.

Annual leave

Paid annual leave to employees averaged 25 days per year with a small number of contractors reporting a paid leave allocation. ED(DHB) doctors averaged 30 days annual leave per year.

CME leave and allowances

As expected very few contractors (3/62) had CME allowances and the same number had paid CME leave in their contract.  About half of employees had annual CME leave (down from 2/3 last year) averaging 6.2 days while half had a dollar allowance, averaging $6200 the range being $300 to $16000-, the latter being DHB employees.

Peer review groups

As in previous years few contractors had paid peer review time and a clear majority of employees did also not get paid Peer Review time, evenly spread across worksites. Only 4/10 Clinical Directors had paid Peer Review time.

Staffing levels

Only 9% of respondents said staffing levels were adequate, while 44% thought staffing mostly adequate and 47% felt they were generally inadequate. This is a significant deterioration on last year’s result (20/50/30).


Significant burnout symptoms were reported by 68 % of respondents, a third of these had to take some action to deal with it.

Plans for the next 5 years

The plans of members for the next 5 years showed a clear trend with seniority:

  • CDs – 50% planning to reduce hours or leave urgent care
  • Fellows – 16% planning to leave urgent care, 33% to reduce hours
  • Senior Registrars – 10% planning to leave urgent care, 25% to reduce hours
  • Registrars 5% planning to leave urgent care, 15% to reduce hours

In the workplace

Mean scores for the following questions as below:

Most senior staff are supportive4.2Agree
My workplace supports staff wellbeing3.6Somewhat agree
My workplace supports me to achieve a good work/life balance3.6Somewhat agree
Bullying, harassment and discrimination (including racism) is not tolerated at my workplace4.14Agree
I know how to raise concerns/issues about bullying, harassment and discrimination4.17Agree
I am confident that I could raise concerns/issues about bullying, harassment and discrimination in my workplace4.1Agree
I can access support including debriefing from my workplace if I experience stress or a traumatic event3.9Agree
My workplace is supportive when experiencing difficult personal circumstances.4Agree