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Media release: 20 future health professionals ‘go rural’

25th August 2019

This week, 20 medical, nursing and allied health students from across NSW will travel across the state on a road trip designed to encourage future doctors and health professionals to consider the benefits and rewards of a rural career.  

The four-day ‘Go Rural’ road trip, funded by NSW Rural Doctors Network (RDN), will incorporate practice visits, clinical activities, community events, themed dinners, cultural events and historical exhibitions in Bathurst, Orange, Parkes, Trundle, Cobar and Dubbo.  

RDN CEO, Richard Colbran, said Go Rural was developed to demonstrate the professional and personal rewards of healthcare careers in remote and rural locations. 

“Research published in the Medical Journal of Australia shows rural exposure during medical training has been associated with an increased likelihood of medical students entering rural practice after graduation,” Mr Colbran said. 

“Go Rural provides medical, nursing, midwifery and allied health students the opportunity to meet rural health professionals, visit health and medical facilities and get to know some rural communities.  

“This is our second Go Rural trip for this year. Earlier this year we took 19 students out west through six towns including Bourke, and some of those students had never left a city. Every student returned motivated to pursue rural placements and told us just how eye-opening they found the experience. 

“The health of our rural communities is dependent on the successful recruitment and retention of enthusiastic and dedicated health care professionals and Go Rural is one of many RDN strategies in place to develop more sustainable long-term health solutions for remote, rural and regional towns.” 

First-year medical student at the University of Sydney, Anna Milne, was thrilled to be selected for Go Rural.  

“My identity is strongly founded in my family’s history of sheep farming, however I have never lived in rural Australia,” Anna said. 

“I have always dreamed of being a doctor with generalist passions and specialist skills. I realise how crucial it is to bring specialist services to remote areas of Australia, and how privileged rural doctors are in their ability to shape the lives of generations of rural families through ongoing quality primary care.  

“The ability to train and pursue a career rurally will not only develop my self-reliance and breadth of skills; it will also allow me a life based on the values of community, and a sense of belonging to the land, which are so enriched in country living.” 

Go Rural runs from Thursday 29 August – Sunday 1 September 2019. A third Go Rural trip is planned for December. 

RDN is a not-for-profit, non-government charitable organisation and is the Australian Government’s designated Rural Workforce Agency for health in NSW. Its vision is for improved health service access for all Australians – no matter where they live.  

RDN receives program funding from the Australian Government Department of Health and the NSW Ministry of Health. Local governments, community and industry organisations also contribute funding for RDN activities. 

PICTURE OPPORTUNITIES: Please see the itinerary for photo opportunities available to media during the Go Rural experience. For photos, media enquiries and interviews, call RDN’s Senior Manager – Stakeholder Engagement and Communications, Katie Porritt, on 02 4924 8083. 

GO RURAL – ITINERARY (subject to change) 


Thursday 29 August 2019 
7.00am Depart Sydney 
11am Bathurst - Farm visit ‘Cotties Run’ with students from Bathurst Rural Clinical School 
1pm Depart Bathurst 
2pm Orange Aboriginal Medical Services 
6pm Dinner in Orange  

Friday 30 August 2019 
7.30am Multidisciplinary breakfast panel – Orange Hospital  
9am Depart Orange  
10.30am Parkes Observatory – view The Dish and 3D theatre show MiddayDepart Parkes 
1pm Trundle Multipurpose Service (tbc) 
2pm Depart Trundle 
5pm Arrive Cobar  
6pm Cobar Outback Inspiration Dinner  

Saturday 31 August 2019 
8am Cobar Parkrun 
9.30am Cobar District Hospital 
10.30am Cobar Primary Health Care Centre  
1pm Depart Cobar  
4.30pm Arrive Dubbo  
6pm Dinner and Tenpin Bowls at Dubbo Tenpin Bowl 

Sunday 1 September 2019 
10am Depart Dubbo 
11.30am Lunch and explore Mudgee 
5pm Arrive Sydney 

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