1st International Medical Graduate is elected as President of RANZCP

Posted 21/5/2021 by Alasdair Spinner
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Held in Hobart, Tasmania the 2021 Royal Australian New Zealand College of Psychiatrist conference has just closed. 

 

In the context of psychiatry workforce and migration, the conference had a watershed moment. This was the appointment of RANZCP's first ever President who completed their psychiatry training outside of Australia - the first President who is a specialist international medical graduate (SIMG).

 

Associate Professor Vinay Lakra graduated MBBS from the Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College in India in 1999. He then completed his MD at the Central Institute of Psychiatry also in India and travelled to Australia in 2004. He became a Fellow of RANZP in 2007. Associate Professor Lakra is the Clinical Director of the North Western Mental Health Service in Melbourne, Victoria and is a board member of both the Victorian state boards of the Medical Board of Australia and the Australian Medical Association council. On top of this he is also a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators (FRACMA) and has a Masters in Health Management UNSW.


Associate Professor Lakra's appointment as President is fantastic, not least for raising the profile of SIMGs planning or hoping to migrate to Australia or those who have already migrated there. He said one of his main priorities are helping the progression to fellowship for trainees and SIMGs. 

 

His elevation importantly highlights the critical role SIMGs play in delivering first class mental health care (as well as other medical specialties) to fellow Australians. It's a role I think has been criminally under-acknowledged or even ignored by the media, commentators and medical establishment in Australia. 

 

Associate Professor Lakra's appointment as President will hopefully bring their contribution further to the fore. 

 

Congratulations President Lakra! 

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