Regional Training Hubs for doctors only part of the solution

Wednesday 5 Jul 2017

VC Andy Vann April 2017Charles Sturt University (CSU) and La Trobe University have welcomed as a step in the right direction the federal government's announcement yesterday that it has secured agreement to offer new clinical training opportunities in rural and regional Australia.

The federal government has signed off on the creation of 26 Regional Training Hubs to encourage young doctors to undertake postgraduate training in regional areas.

Three new University Departments of Rural Health, including at Charles Sturt University, will provide rural training placements for nursing and allied health students.

CSU Vice-Chancellor Professor Andrew Vann (pictured) said, "We are pleased to welcome this announcement by the Turnbull-Joyce government. It is another important step in addressing doctor shortages in our rural and regional footprint.

"Both Charles Sturt and La Trobe Universities acknowledge that the Murray Darling Medical School (MDMS) is National Party policy.

"We are looking forward to the conclusion of the review by EY (Ernst & Young) being undertaken for the Hon. Dr David Gillespie MP, Assistant Minister for Health, which will be a critical element of the government's plan to ensure that our communities have access to first class healthcare services."

La Trobe University acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Rob Pike said the initiatives were an important way to address rural and regional health workforce shortages, but more needed to be done to keep doctors in the bush.

"Regional Training Hubs that increase postgraduate opportunities are a welcome step, but on their own they will not solve the ongoing rural and regional doctor shortage that is putting the health and wellbeing of country people at risk," Dr Rob Pike said.

"In addition to postgraduate medical opportunities, we must boost undergraduate opportunities at rural universities. We must train regional students to become regional doctors and the way to do that is through the Murray Darling Medical School."


Media contact: Bruce Andrews, (02) 6338 6084

Media Note:
Contact CSU Media to arrange interviews with CSU Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Vann.