The Rural Intern Training Allowance is aimed at increasing access to quality pharmacy services for rural healthcare Patients by improving and strengthening the rural pharmacy workforce in regional and remote areas of Australia.

The Rural Intern Training Allowance (RITA) provides financial support for Interns practicing in rural and remote areas to access compulsory training activities required as part of their Intern Training Program. This Allowance complements the existing Continuing Professional Education Allowance (CPE), and is available to Intern Pharmacists only.

To be eligible to apply for RITA, applicants must:

  • Be an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • Be an Intern Pharmacist who is eligible to undertake intern training requirements, having already completed a pharmacy course approved by the Pharmacy Board of Australia
  • Reside and work in a Pharmacy Accessibility Remoteness Index of Australia (PhARIA) Category 2 to Category 6 location. (For information on PhARIA locations, refer to the PhARIA website.)

Applicants will be required to provide certified documents to support their eligibility, such as proof of citizenship or permanent residency and proof of enrolment in an Intern Training Program.

Before submitting an application, the applicant must register as an Intern Pharmacist through the Pharmacy Programs Administrator Portal.

Applications must then be submitted via the Pharmacy Programs Administrator Portal, within 60 calendar days after the conclusion of the compulsory intern training event. Each compulsory training event must be claimed separately, and late applications will not be accepted.

Limits apply to the various components of the RITA. Refer to the Rural Intern Training Allowance Program Rules for further details.

Documentation to support the RITA claim may include:

  • Documentation demonstrating proof of attendance at a compulsory intern training activity
  • Official tax invoices detailing eligible expenditure
  • A travel log book detailing evidence of car travel (refer to the Travel Log Book).

Interns may claim up to $1,500 per financial year under the RITA program for travel and accommodation costs associated with participating in training events that are compulsory for completing their internship. Events may include training days, workshops, and examinations that make up part of the Intern Training Program.

Funding will not be considered for:

  • Fees associated with attendance at the compulsory event
  • Attendance at any overseas workshops, training days or exams
  • Meals
  • Car hire
  • Travel to and from the applicant’s accommodation venue and the event venue.

Interns who attended events that are not a compulsory part of their Intern Training Program should claim travel and accommodation costs through the CPE program.

Rural Intern Training Allowance FAQ

  1. Please refer to the Portal User Guide – RITA that is available from the Downloads section of this page.

  2. Applicants must be:

    • An Australian citizen or permanent resident
    • An Intern Pharmacist
    • Residing or undertaking their intern year in a rural or remote area of Australia.

    Please see the Program Rules, available from the Downloads section of this page.

  3. Eligible locations are classified as being in a PhARIA Category 2 to Category 6 location. For information on PhARIA locations, refer to the PhARIA website.

  4. Eligible Intern Pharmacists are allowed to claim up to a maximum of $1,500 per financial year.

    For car travel using your own vehicle, a rate of 68 cents per kilometre will be used to calculate payments. Please note that some of the components within each claim are also capped, including the following:

    • Payments for car travel will be capped at 500 km, even if you have travelled further
    • Taxi fares are capped at $100 per claim
    • Accommodation is capped at a rate of $200 per night
    • Only economy fares will be funded.
  5. You can claim for any compulsory event that forms part of your Intern Training Program. These could include any of the following:

    • Compulsory training days
    • Compulsory workshops
    • Compulsory exams.

    Any event attended that is not a compulsory part of an Intern Training Program is not eligible to claim under the RITA. However, if eligible, these events may be claimed through the Rural CPE Allowance.

  6. The minimum distance claimable for car travel is 200 km and the maximum distance claimable is 500 km. The car travel must be part of a round trip from your home to the training event and home again.

    Funding is not considered for the travel to and from your accommodation venue and the training venue.

  7. Claims are required to be submitted via the Pharmacy Programs Administrator Portal within 60 days of the conclusion of the event.

  8. You can provide evidence such as confirmation of passing the exam or a letter from the event organisers confirming your attendance. Information about registering for an event is not sufficient and your claim will be declined.

  9. Yes. You will be able to view on the Pharmacy Programs Administrator Portal all payments made for claims that have been approved and paid. 

  10. Funding will not be considered for:

    • Any event that is not a compulsory part of the Intern Training Program
    • Any fees associated with attendance at the training day, workshop or exam
    • Any overseas training day, workshop or exam
    • Meals
    • Car hire
    • Travel between your accommodation venue and the training venue
    • Any travel undertaken that was not economy class.
  11. You can claim for the night directly preceding the eligible RITA event and, if needed, the night(s) of your RITA event. In some circumstances, claiming the costs of an extra night may be allowed but applicants will be required to provide justification for this.

  12. A certified copy of your Australian passport, birth certificate in an Australian state or territory or certificate of Australian citizenship is considered adequate evidence of citizenship.

    For permanent residents you may provide a certified copy of your letter confirming permanent residency or evidence from the Commonwealth’s Visa Entitlement Verification Online website. This must include your name and visa number.

  13. No, once you have provided acceptable citizenship or permanent residency evidence, you will not have to provide it again. However, if you upload your passport, you will be required to upload a new passport when your current passport expires.