January 18, 2017
Medical students get taste of regions
Whakatane is to be the second area after Northland to benefit from the University of Auckland Medical School’s regional-rural programme.
That means fifth year medical students will soon be working at Whakatane Hospital and in local GP rooms.
The university and the Bay of Plenty District Health Board will launch the programme with a joint powhiri at the hospital next Monday.
In the past students have taken part in a six week rural health immersion programme at Whakatane Hospital, but under the new programme they will spend nearly three months at Whakatane and the balance of the year at Tauranga Hospital’s Bay of Plenty clinical school.
Some 24 fourth year, 18 fifth year and 16 sixth year students will work and study in the Bay this year.
Professor Peter Gilling, the head of the clinical school, says experience suggests some of the students will return to the area and other rural regions later on as graduate doctors.
“This will enhance the medical workforce in the Bay of Plenty and rural New Zealand,” he says.
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