CWA of NSW supports Med Students to Undertake Placements in Country Towns

19th November 2014

Doctors looking at X-raySixteen rural councils along with the Country Women’s Association of NSW are sponsoring medical students to undertake placements in country towns as part of the NSW Rural Doctors Network commitment to attracting and retaining medical, nursing and allied health professionals to the bush.

The NSW Rural Doctors Network (RDN) administers the Bush Bursary and Country Women’s Association (CWA) scholarships, which provide students with $3,000 for one year, during which time they spend two weeks in their sponsoring rural area experiencing work and life in a rural community.

As well as spending time with local GPs and other medical specialists, the scholarship recipients will also visit allied and community health services including the local pharmacy, aged care facility and Aboriginal Medical Service.

The 18 participating students who will complete the placement between November and January are from the Universities of New South Wales, Wollongong, Sydney, Notre Dame, Newcastle, New England and the Australian National University.

Former Bush Bursary recipient (2013) Annaliese Szyc who completed her placement in Temora felt it was an invaluable learning opportunity. “The placement gave me the chance to pull together a lot of the theoretical material we had studied throughout the year and see it in the context of rural practice. It was an extremely education experience. I think I learnt as much in 2- weeks in Temora as I did in the whole year of medical school!”

Another Bush Bursary recipient (2013) Simon Walters who was sponsored by Moree Plains Shire Council said of his experience. “I feel more inclined to practice rural medicine now after the placement. I could actually foresee working in Moree in the future.”

Councils taking part in the 2014 program are Berrigan, Brewarrina, Deniliquin, Goulburn Mulwaree, Guyra, Lachlan, Leeton, Moree, Narrabri, Orange, Parkes, Temora, Tenterfield, Tumbarumba, Yass Valley and Wentworth. The CWA is also sponsoring two students in Orange and Leeton.