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Table 7 Major theme and subthemes: career progression

From: Retention of allied health professionals in rural New South Wales: a thematic analysis of focus group discussions

  Subthemes Example
Lack of career opportunities I think that was a difficulty in keeping people. Up until last year we had no senior positions so if you cut someone out here and they had a level of experience, they had to leave to go to a higher level job. There was nothing, no career structure. (G5-OT-Female-age35)
Advanced work roles You come here and you've got these huge broad naught to death experience, bizarre conditions. You know, people with obscure conditions still live in rural centres and still need to access services, so you get this amazing clinical experience. You don't get pigeon-holed, which is – sometimes it's nice to have – to develop a particular area of expertise, but you still can do that while having very broad enriched clinical load. (G2-SP-Female-age32)
Remuneration … in the city, you know, you can specialize in seeing one type of child, or one type of disorder, and get paid much more than a rural clinician who has to be good at seeing it all. And that does become frustrating, when you know that you have good skills, and you work your butt off to keep your skills, and you can never earn more than –(G2-SP-Female-age 31)
Recognition I think it's recognition, I think it's having that extra challenge, I think it's having the extra opportunity to further your skills because you're expected to do more when you have that label of being a senior… to supervise other staff or go to the quality planning or any of those things…or even just getting that clinical expertise (G6-SW-Male-age 30)