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BHP and WA Centre for Regional Health partner to help health students find accommodation in Hedland

Alexander ScottNorth West Telegraph
Murdoch University nursing student Arabel De Winnaar, CQU nursing student Lisa Poi and Notre Dame physiotherapy student Chenae King with Patrik Mellberg from BHP.
Camera IconMurdoch University nursing student Arabel De Winnaar, CQU nursing student Lisa Poi and Notre Dame physiotherapy student Chenae King with Patrik Mellberg from BHP. Credit: Supplied/BHP/BHP

A partnership between a mining company and the WA Centre for Regional Health has given five health students housing support for their placement at Hedland Health Campus.

BHP and the WACRH announced on August 24 the mining company had provided housing to the nursing and allied health professionals for their nine-week placement at the Hedland hospital.

The rent-free arrangement came about after the WACRH reached out to BHP because it was unable to find accommodation for students in Port Hedland because of the coronavirus pandemic and a backlog of health students requiring placement.

The WACRH, based at UWA, supports the placement of nursing and allied health students in rural and regional WA to support them to finish their studies.

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The centre also collaborates with the Rural Clinical School WA to place student doctors in the regions.

WACRH assistant director Rohan Rasiah said he was very thankful BHP was able to place the students in quality housing, enabling his organisation to continue to support the delivery of health services in rural and regional WA.

Mr Rasiah said the large geographical distances in regional WA remained a major challenge to the attraction and retention of health care professionals.

“Providing students with the opportunity to work and experience life in a regional health setting during their training encourages them to return once qualified,” he said.

“Mental health and Aboriginal health are also an important focus of WACRH and it is critical that we attract nurses, allied health professionals and doctors to regional communities so that the access to quality healthcare is universal.

“This in-kind support from BHP helps us support our students and live our mission to attract and retain quality health professionals in the regions.”

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