The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP)
Whāia te iti Kahurangi – Strive for something of great value!
The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) is the principal organisation representing the medical specialty of psychiatry in Australia and New Zealand/Aotearoa and has responsibility for training, examining and awarding the qualification of Fellowship of the RANZCP.
The RANZCP is committed to honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi, improving mental health outcomes for tangata whaiora and working actively to reduce health inequities experienced by tangata whenua due to the impacts of colonisation.
Tu Te Akaaka Roa is the Māori name for the RANZCP’s New Zealand National Committee. It was developed to strengthen the College’s Māori identity and is symbolised with a taonga depicted above. Read about the whakapapa of taonga and the RANZCP’s waiata.
Why be a psychiatrist/Tākuta Hauora Hinengaro
Join a profession that makes a real difference in the lives of everyday people. Psychiatrists are specialist medical doctors who are experts in mental health. As a psychiatrist, you’ll help people to manage and recover from mental health conditions. You’ll get to know your patients and listen to their stories. Using your medical, psychological and interpersonal skills you will work alongside your patients and diagnose a range of complex conditions.
As a medical speciality, psychiatry allows you to practice in a broad range of fields, inside and outside the hospital environment and across the age spectrum. You can be out in the community working closely with and making a difference to whānau or enjoy the business of inpatient work. Psychiatry is a holistic speciality, working across primary/community, secondary (hospital) care and emergency care. There are also a number of Kaupapa Māori mental health services in different parts of Aotearoa. Working in psychiatry allows doctors to actively use Te Reo and tikanga (all things Maori) in their day to day work. Māori have a high level of unmet need for mental health support and your contribution would make a difference to the health of your whānau.
It is an exciting time to be working in mental health with transformational change proposed by the response to He Ara Oranga – Report of the Government inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction (2018).
You will not be alone in your career at the RANZCP. We have a kaumātua guiding the College on tikanga. The RANZCP holds a hui to bring together Māori psychiatrists and registrars as a means of supporting each other. We also have Te Kaunihera mo ngā kaupapa Hauora Hinengaro Māori (Te Kaunihera) a constituent committee of the RANZCP’s Practice, Policy and Partnerships Committee. The Committee provides the RANZCP with advice and support on issues relating to Māori and advocates for Māori mental health. Committee membership includes Māori community members, psychiatrists and trainees.
Te Rau Ora recently highlighted a number of our iwi Māori leaders in mental health. Read their stories below.
Specialise in the Mind provides a good overview of the benefits if you choose a career in psychiatry.
Pathways into Psychiatry from Secondary School to University
If you’re at secondary school, the idea of becoming a doctor and choosing a medical specialty like psychiatry might seem a bit daunting – there’s a lot of study and training.
To make it easier, the links below break down the steps and requirements and provide some useful tips and advice:
Entry into medicine
Subjects to study at school
Alternative pathways into medicine
Psychiatry training at RANZCP
Checklist for secondary school students
Stories from our Members
Printable and online resources
Medical Students/Medical Tauira
Have an interest in mental health and psychiatry? Join the RANZCP’s Psychiatry Interest Forum (PIF) and stay in the loop with the College’s activities and opportunities. As a member of the PIF you will receive a range of free benefits including:
- invitations to educational events, including lectures, workshops and conferences
- career guidance in psychiatry and its subspecialties through seminars and networking with RANZCP Fellows and trainees
- invitations to participate in RANZCP awards, prizes and grants around promotion, research or advocacy in mental health
- access to RANZCP e-learning resources
- e-newsletters to keep up to date with RANZCP activities.
A good number of Māori medical students are PIF members so it may be a good networking opportunity to connect with others.
How to join
Registration is free: Simply complete the online application from.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you are switching your membership from student to practitioner.
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Joining the RANZCP training programme
The RANZCP objective is to train psychiatrists who can practice in the health systems in both New Zealand/Aotearoa and Australia.
Most psychiatrists in Aotearoa will be employed by a District Health Board (DHB) e.g. a public hospital system where you may be working with a number of different health providers in a range of locations. You may wish to work in private practice or for a non-government organisation, so there is flexibility. You can train full-time and part-time as well.
Most of your training will be undertaken within a DHB. Training is offered by DHB’s at different levels across Aotearoa but not all of them are able to offer advanced training.
For more information on the training programme please click here>>
Selection of trainees
This is a summary of the selection procedures for the RANZCP Fellowship Programme.
Applicants are selected for psychiatry training based on their suitability, skills and experience to ensure:
- that they are capable of providing psychiatric care to the standard expected by people with mental health problems and mental illness in Australia and New Zealand
- they are potentially capable of completing the Fellowship programme within the time allowed.
Prerequisites for applying to enter the Fellowship Program are:
- successful completion of a medical degree
- at least one year (FTE) of general medical training
- current registration as a medical practitioner in Australia or New Zealand (applicants who have or have had special conditions, limitations, notations, undertakings or provisional requirements imposed on their registration must provide full disclosure of the nature of these to the Committee for Training with their application).
To enter psychiatry training, applicants must:
- be selected to enter the College’s Fellowship Program by a local/Branch Training Committee
- be appointed to a College-accredited training post
- have submitted a signed Application to Register to the College Head Office (separate from the application form submitted to the New Zealand Training Committee or delegated body)
- have submitted a signed Training Agreement to the College Head Office
- have paid the prescribed fees by the specified due dates.
RANZCP Funding Available to Assist Māori Trainees
The RANZCP aspires to ensure its membership reflects Aotearoa’s population. We encourage Māori to apply for our trainee grants. Up to A$6000 per calendar year is available to assist with the costs of specialist training (e.g. RANZCP training fees, assessment fees, attending conferences) and other activities to achieve Fellowship. To apply, read the Financial Support Initiative guidelines and submit an application form. Please direct any queries to email@example.com.
RANZCP Awards, Grants and Bursaries
The RANZCP supports and celebrates the important contributions psychiatrists, trainees and other individuals make to improve the mental health of people and communities across Australia, New Zealand/Aotearoa and the Asia–Pacific region with a number of awards, grants and fellowships, which:
- recognise remarkable contributions to psychiatry, the community and the College
- support and encourage psychiatrists to engage in clinical work, research and other initiatives to improve the mental health and wellbeing of communities
- acknowledge and encourage excellence in psychiatric training, and offer assessment assistance
- promote the development of psychiatry.
There are two awards that support the mahi related to indigenous health:
The Mark Sheldon Prize
The Mark Sheldon Prize is awarded by nomination. It recognises noteworthy contributions (which might include service provision or research) to Indigenous mental health in either Australia or New Zealand.
The Prize may be given to RANZCP trainees or early career psychiatrists (e.g. for meritorious work or research in Indigenous mental health undertaken as part of the RANZCP training programme). The Prize is also open to more senior RANZCP Fellows and Affiliates, and eminent community members who have made significant contributions to Indigenous mental health.
The Pirika Taonga
The Pirika Taonga is in memory of Poiti Arama-karaka Pirika who was the RANZCP’s Kaumātua from 2008 to 2017. It recognises noteworthy contributions in Māori mental health and addiction in Aotearoa/New Zealand.
The award may be given to a Māori member of the RANZCP (Fellow, Affiliate or trainee), or a member of the Māori community, who has contributed to increasing Māori relationships across the New Zealand mental health sector including noteworthy contributions (which may include service provision, leadership, research) in Māori mental health and addictions in Aotearoa New Zealand. The individual’s commitment to Te Reo Māori me onā tikanga in practice is one of the noteworthy principles underpinning the award.
The award includes a taonga (treasure) in the form of a carved pounamu (greenstone pendant).
The RANZCP also sponsors a number of Māori medical students to attend the New Zealand National Conference or College Congress (if in Aotearoa). Information is posted on the Te ORA website before these events.
Want to know more?
Kaua e whakamā e hoa mā? He aha tō pātai? Don’t be shy? What are your questions? Please contact Tu Te Akaaka Roa office, firstname.lastname@example.org and we can put you in contact with a Māori trainee or Māori consultant to answer any of your questions.
Kia maumahara koe, kei te ako tahi tatou! Remember we are all learning together!
Useful / Related links
Māori Mental Health Resources – please click here>>
Relevant submissions – please click here>>
Want to become a member?
Get in touch, or register now