A PARTNERSHIP between the University of Melbourne and La Trobe University that was formed to address shortages in the rural medical workforce is one step closer to providing complete medical training for students in a rural setting.
Additional accommodation and purpose-built learning and training spaces were officially opened by Federal Member for Regional Health, Dr David Gillespie, last week. Medical students will now be able to live and train in the Goulburn Valley, and be workforce ready after graduating.
The program is part of a series of government funded programs under the banner of the Murray-Darling Medical Schools Network (MDMSN), which was created to address chronic shortages of doctors in regional and rural areas by training students from the regions, in the regions.
University of Melbourne Professor John Prins, head of Melbourne Medical School said the program can accommodate up to 100 students.
“Evidence shows that the longer students spend in the country, the more likely they are to choose to live and work in a rural setting,” he said.
“Rates of chronic ill-health are high in rural areas, and access to healthcare can be difficult,” said Professor Jane Gunn, University of Melbourne’s dean of the faculty of medicine, dentistry, and health sciences.
“The students will benefit from a curriculum designed to support new ways of working which includes new technology suited to regional delivery.”