MEDICAL students will get a chance to see what being a doctor is like in a rural community over the coming 12 months.
The students from the Graduate School of Medicine at the University of Wollongong will spend the next year working alongside local doctors.
They will be based in Kiama, Gerringong, Nowra, Shoalhaven Heads, Vincentia and the Shoalhaven Hospital.
The year-long clinical placement program is an important aspect of the UOW medical curriculum, which has been designed with a strong focus on preparing doctors to practise in regional and rural areas.
Associate Professor Mark Wilson, who oversees the clinical placements program, said, “The best way to encourage young doctors to practise medicine in rural communities after they graduate is to introduce them to life in a country town while they are students”.
The students already have a wealth of knowledge under their collective belts, having graduated from a variety of degrees including science, physics, engineering and psychology. They are all mid-way through the third year of the medical degree.
The UOW’s Graduate School of Medicine was established with the primary aim of helping to address the critical shortage of medical practitioners outside the major cities and actively recruits students who have a rural background. It is the only medical school in Australia that provides opportunities for all of its students to undertake a 12-month clinical placement in a rural or regional area.