RACGP appoints new CEO

Tuesday, 12 October, 2021

RACGP appoints new CEO

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has appointed Paul Wappett as its new CEO, starting Monday, 8 November.

The appointment follows the resignation of Dr Matthew Miles in July this year. ACGP Board Chair Christine Nixon took on the role of Executive Chair while the college conducted a national search for a new CEO.

Paul Wappett was previously the CEO of the private higher education provider the Australian Institute of Business (AIB). Under his leadership, AIB underwent a comprehensive business transformation. It improved the quality of education programs and achieved record student-satisfaction ratings, an engaged workforce and, ultimately, a strong increase in enrolments.

“GPs are on the frontline helping patients during a pandemic and playing an essential role in a complex vaccine rollout. As COVID-19 hopefully moves from the pandemic to endemic phase here in Australia, GPs will be responsible for managing the fallout. That includes helping patients who have delayed or avoided care and treatment, treating people with ‘long COVID’ as well as those who are experiencing mental health concerns.

“It’ll be my job to do everything possible to fight for GPs as they help their communities recover.

“I want membership of the college to be as easy and straightforward as possible and the benefits we deliver for them to be 100% apparent. That includes taking on big advocacy challenges, such as ensuring the fees GPs derive through the Medicare Benefits Schedule keep pace with the cost of delivering world-class general practice care.

“I want general practice to be front of mind for government and for members to know that our voice will always be heard loud and clear.

“I also want to be upfront with all members and RACGP staff that there are challenges ahead. The return of GP training to the colleges will be a watershed moment and means the RACGP needs to work in very close partnership with training organisations and the federal government to ensure a smooth transition.

RACGP President Dr Karen Price said, “After a thorough national search, the RACGP Board was unanimous in the decision to offer the role to Paul, and I believe he is the right person to lead the college in the years ahead. He comes to the RACGP with impeccable credentials and a strong track record of executive leadership, and we are lucky to have him.

“I look forward to working closely with Paul on managing the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as changes to continuing professional development and the return of GP training to the college. I also hope to help Paul further transform the culture of the RACGP and respond positively to member feedback.”

Wappett’s previous positions include being the CEO of Open Universities Australia from 2012–18 and legal and commercial roles at CPA Australia, the Western Bulldogs Football Club, Mobil Oil Australia and law firm Clayton Utz.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/designer491

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