Sydney-based medical students Asher Taccori and Georgina Cornall are considering a rural medical career.
“I’ve always been curious about practising rural medicine, and there is only so much you can learn from reading a pamphlet,” said Asher.
The Rural Doctors' Network (RDN) in NSW administer the Bush Bursary program in collaboration with the Country Women’s Association (CWA), providing scholarships which give medical, nursing and midwifery students a taste of the life of a country GP.
Asher and Georgina each received a $1500 scholarship from CWA and RDN arranged their two-week rural placements in Tumbarumba and Tumut in southeast NSW as part of the program.
“Through this placement I was able to meet the local community and learn more about the skills and experiences of rural health professionals,” said Asher.
30 March 2023
No matter where you are
Rural & Remote Australia
Asher and Georgina in Tutmut
Research has clearly demonstrated that students exposed to a rural placement during their studies are more likely to consider a rural career on graduation.
With this in mind, the Country Women’s Association (CWA) offers several scholarships each year incorporating a placement in rural NSW. The CWA’s objective is to improve conditions for women and children, particularly those living in country areas. Access to health services is core to this objective.
NSW Rural Doctors Network (RDN) Bush Bursaries and Country Women's Association (CWA) Scholarships provide selected medical, midwifery and nursing students in NSW and the ACT with $1,500 each to assist with costs associated with their studies. Recipients spend two weeks on a rural placement in country NSW during their university holidays.
The placement is organised by regional councils to include the enjoyable aspects of country life and rural medicine.
“I enjoy the diversity that rural life brings and I believe a career in rural health will reflect this diversity and challenge me,” said Georgina Cornall of her placement in southern New South Wales.
Applicants for the bursaries must demonstrate an interest and understanding of rural practice and lifestyle and they are then matched to a rural or remote service experience which is tailored to their interests.
23-year-old medical student, Maddy Hawthorne, spent two weeks in Bega on a Bush Bursary in 2019 at the end of her fourth year of study.
“The most monumental thing I learnt while on the Bush Bursary placement in Bega was the impact of healthcare accessibility on small communities. Each day I met patients who had travelled up to two hours just to get to Bega’s South East Regional Hospital (SERH).
“This highlighted to me the importance of making rural medicine more accessible for the health and wellbeing of patients and their families.”
Applications for this year’s program open on June 19. More information about the program and how to apply is available at NSW RDN Bush Bursary and CWA Scholarship.