We believe that all Australians have a fundamental right to access high quality primary care, regardless of where they live.
The Rural and Remote Medical Services Ltd (RARMS) was established in 2001 as a not-for-profit charity by the NSW Rural Doctors Network in response to the ongoing rural doctor crisis that was threatening many rural and remote communities with the loss of local health services.
RARMS works with local rural, remote and Indigenous communities to support them to understand their health needs, develop place-based plans and in some cases establish and operate health and medical practices in partner towns through our RARMS Health community service arm.
We raise money and support from businesses and the community to help us to ensure that rural, remote and Indigenous communities have a say in their own health futures, and equip them with the tools to engage with the community in a shared mission to address the social determinants of health.
Through RARMS Health, we establish not for profit medical practices staffed by local resident GPs and health staff in towns that need 24/7 on-the-ground GP care. RARMS Health helps communities by acquiring premises, employing nurses and health staff, buying the equipment and stores and then recruiting doctors on behalf of the community.
Doctor and health professional recruitment is managed through RARMS Medical Workforce and Telehealth Solutions.
RARMS Health does not employ doctors. Doctors working from RARMS Health-run practices operate their own independent medical business. We work to make it as easy as possible for doctors to work in rural and remote communities to increase access to local health care in vulnerable communities.
RARMS is the most successful charity in Australia in establishing and keeping local resident medical and health practices operating in rural and remote communities over the last 20 years. We are the largest resident GP service supplier in rural and remote NSW. Our doctors and staff live in rural and remote communities, building a deep understanding of the needs of the community and growing the relationships necessary for successful health improvement.
Over this time we have successfully established practices in numerous rural, remote and Indigenous communities and in some cases have been able to hand over the medical service to a doctor we have recruited.
As a charity, we do not receive any special funding from government to support this work. Instead, we seek support from the community and business and from fee income through our RARMS Medical Workforce and Telehealth services division.
We direct all our surpluses into our charitable reserves for investment directly back into our communities, the expansion of health services and where possible to contract Locums (short term doctor) to cover periods when there are no permanent doctors due to shortages.