Voluntary Bonding Scheme – 2021 intake

The Voluntary Bonding Scheme (the Scheme) is a practical initiative run by the Ministry of Health to encourage newly qualified health professionals to work in the communities and specialties that need them most, and to retain essential health professionals in New Zealand. It also aims to increase representation of Māori and Pasifika within the health workforce.

The Scheme is targeted to new graduates in eligible professions (and General Practice medical trainees) who are starting their career, with the aim of incentivising them to work in eligible hard-to-staff communities or specialties. Those accepted to the Scheme can become eligible for payments in the first three-to-five years of their career, to help repay their student loan or as top-up income.

Analysis of historical workforce data indicates that registered nurses on the Scheme have higher retention in hard-to-staff specialties compared to nurses not on the Scheme. Of graduate nurses who have registered for the Scheme, the retention rate after five years is up to 27 percent higher than those graduates who did not register for the Scheme.

The Scheme also provides important geographic location incentives for other Scheme professions.

2021 intake – eligible professions, communities and specialties

The Ministry of Health is pleased to announce the eligible professions, communities and specialties for next years’ 2021 intake of the Scheme. Changes from the last intake include the addition of:

  • new graduate Radiation Therapists who will work in the public sector
  • new graduate Medical Physicists who will work in the public sector
  • Dunedin as an eligible community for new graduate DHB-employed midwives
  • Dunedin, Queenstown Lakes District and Whanganui DHB as eligible communities for new graduate LMC midwives.

The full list of eligible professions, specialties and communities can be found below.

The 2021 intake online Registration of Interest is anticipated to open on this website early in 2021 (probably February) and additional information will be provided in due course. The formal 2021 Terms and Conditions will be uploaded to the Terms and Conditions page before the Registration period opens.

Any queries regarding the 2021 intake can be made via email to vbs@health.govt.nz.

2021 Intake  hard-to-staff professions, communities and specialties

Postgraduate General Practice Trainees (PGY3-6), who commence(d) GPEP1, 2, or 3 in December 2020:

  • Bay of Plenty DHB (excluding Tauranga and Whakatane urban)
  • Canterbury DHB (excluding, Christchurch other than Banks Peninsula)
  • Capital & Coast DHB (excluding Wellington and Porirua)
  • Hawke’s Bay DHB
  • Lakes DHB
  • Midcentral DHB
  • Nelson Marlborough DHB (excluding Nelson/Richmond)
  • Northland DHB
  • South Canterbury DHB
  • Southern DHB (excluding Dunedin, Mosgiel and Invercargill)
  • Tairawhiti DHB
  • Taranaki DHB
  • Waikato DHB (excluding Hamilton)
  • Wairarapa DHB
  • West Coast DHB
  • Whanganui DHB

Registered Nurses (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

Specialties:

  • Aged Care (aged residential care and older persons' health services)
  • Mental Health (hospital and community, including addiction services)
  • District Nursing
  • Well Child/Tamariki Ora
  • Primary/Practice Nursing within:
    • Māori or Pacific Providers
    • the Auckland DHB region
    • the Counties Manukau DHB region
    • the Waitemata DHB region
    • the Taranaki DHB region

OR

Communities:

  • South Canterbury DHB
  • Wairoa District
  • West Coast DHB

Enrolled Nurses (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

Specialties:

  • Aged Care (aged residential care and older persons' health services)
  • Mental Health (hospital and community, including addiction services)

Midwives – DHB Employed (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

  • Auckland DHB
  • Bay of Plenty DHB
  • Canterbury DHB
  • Capital & Coast DHB
  • Counties Manukau DHB
  • Dunedin City
  • Hutt Valley DHB
  • Lakes DHB
  • MidCentral DHB
  • Northland DHB
  • Waikato DHB
  • Waitemata DHB

Midwives – Lead Maternity Carers (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

  • Auckland DHB
  • Bay of Plenty DHB
  • Counties Manukau DHB
  • Dunedin City
  • Lakes DHB
  • MidCentral DHB
  • Queenstown Lakes District
  • Waikato DHB
  • Waitemata DHB
  • Whanganui DHB

Sonographers (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

  • Publicly funded health facilities.

Radiation Therapists (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

  • Publicly funded health facilities.

Medical Physicists (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

  • Publicly funded health facilities.

Dentists (2021 Intake (2020 graduates))

Any of the eight Māori oral health providers listed below:

  • Te Hiku Hauora – Kaitaia  
  • Ngāti Hine Health Trust – Kawakawa 
  • Raukura Hauora o Tainui – Hamilton
  • Te Manu Toroa – Tauranga  
  • Tipu Ora – Rotorua 
  • Ngati Porou Hauora – Te Puia
  • Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga – Hastings  
  • Ora Toa PHO – Porirua  

OR

practices located in rural or remote areas (to be assessed on a case by case basis prior to your confirmation on the Scheme).

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