RURAL STINT: Medical students are learning practical medical skills, while experiencing what it's like to live in a rural and remote community and learning about local history and culture.
RURAL STINT: Medical students are learning practical medical skills, while experiencing what it's like to live in a rural and remote community and learning about local history and culture.

Medical students taste rural and remote practice

A NUMBER of Queensland’s leading regional and rural doctors are sharing their knowledge and skills with half of the Year 3 UQ medicine cohort as part of Introductory Week at the University of Queensland’s Rural Clinical School.

Of these students, 66 are learning about rural medicine in the rural towns of Emerald, Goondiwindi, Kingaroy, Roma and Theodore.

While there, the students will learn practical emergency and other real-life medical skills, which are needed in rural hospitals.

They will also experience what it’s like to live in a rural and remote community and be taken ‘on country’ by local Aboriginal mentors to learn about local history and culture.

The experience is followed by a six week placement across more than 30 rural towns in Queensland.

Medical students are learning practical medical skills, while experiencing what it's like to live in a rural and remote community and learning about local history and culture.
Medical students are learning practical medical skills, while experiencing what it's like to live in a rural and remote community and learning about local history and culture.

The remainder of the Year 3 UQ medicine cohort will have the same opportunity in Semester 2.

Head of UQ’s Mayne Academy for Rural and Remote Medicine, Associate Professor Bruce Chater said this was the second year that medical students were spending Introductory Week in these rural towns.

“Medical students often decide their future career paths during training years and this invaluable experience gives them a taste of rural practice and lifestyle,” she said.

“Research shows students benefit from increased understanding and enthusiasm when they’re immersed in a local community, and this boosts their likelihood of choosing a future in regional/rural medicine.

“We are very proud of our small communities and their busy clinicians and I thank them for the hospitality and generosity of spirit they have shown to our junior doctors of the future.

“We aim to inspire our students through memorable experiences during their time with us so they will want to make rural medicine their career.

“This is crucial to our long-term goal of filling medical workforce shortages in our rural communities,” Associate Professor Chater said.

Further information on rural and remote medicine is available here.