Medical students start rural training
Six of the State’s brightest medical students have arrived to start their one-year placement with the Rural Clinical School of WA in Hedland this week.
The students have plunged into the deep end in the second- last year of their medical degree, moving to the Pilbara to gain some on-the-job experience and learn from Hedland’s best medical practitioners.
Wasting no time in getting involved with the local medical community, the students from UWA and Curtin University toured the Royal Flying Doctor Facility and met the team they will spend some time assisting.
Medical student Erin Hassett said she looked forward to exploring what the Pilbara had to offer and hoped to gain a wealth of knowledge.
“Most of us are city kids, I think moving out here gives us a look into the practise we wouldn’t get if we stayed in Perth,” she said.
“There are certain benefits, including getting the chance to learn in one on one rotations, as opposed to the six or seven other students you may be on the job with in major cities.”
Rural Clinical School of WA medical co-ordinator Rob Whitehead said the program hopes to encourage students to return as fully fledged doctors once they’ve completed their training.
“Regional placements provide a good opportunity for students to become immersed in the Hedland environment,” he said.
“We believe we can teach them what they can’t necessarily receive in Perth,” he said.
“There’s now plenty of evidence that the Rural Clinical School program is effective at increasing the number of medical students who choose to work in the more remote parts of our State.”
It’s the first year Curtin University has participated in the program, and student Raphin Hossain said it was an exciting opportunity.
“We’re lucky enough to be the first two students from Curtin in Hedland, it’s an opportunity both the Rural Clinical School of WA and our university have been working hard to make possible,” he said.
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