Academics and experts gather to workshop future of rural health research

21 APRIL 2021

Academics and experts gather to workshop future of rural health research

More than 30 health professionals and health and tertiary industry experts gathered in Orange on Wednesday 21 April for the Charles Sturt Rural and Regional Health Summit.

  • Charles Sturt University hosted the Rural and Regional Health Summit in Orange today to discuss the direction of the University’s future research
  • Academics, health professionals and industry experts gathered to workshop ideas for research to address rural and regional health needs
  • Outcomes from the Summit to play a key role in informing future health research at all Charles Sturt campuses and research institutes

Charles Sturt University invited academics and industry experts from across the Central West and beyond to collaborate in Orange today for the University’s Rural and Regional Health Summit.

More than 30 health professionals and health and tertiary industry experts attended the Summit to workshop ideas for the future direction of health research at Charles Sturt.

Executive Dean in the Faculty of Science Professor Megan Smith said the Summit was an important step in identifying focus areas for health research at Charles Sturt and bringing forward the University’s commitment to advancing rural and regional health outcomes.

“The aim of our Summit was to bring together a number of our key stakeholders and work collaboratively with them to help set the direction of our future research outputs,” Professor Smith said.

“We want our research to address problems and provide solutions for not only rural and regional communities across our campus footprint and in Australia, but for communities around the world.

“To do this, we need to actively engage with key stakeholders both within and outside of our University to ensure our research aligns with industry and community needs.

“I’d like to thank all of those who attended. It was an extremely productive and valuable workshop and provided us with information we need to forge the next steps to continue to deliver world-class research outcomes in rural and regional health.”

Attendees for the summit included special guest speakers: Dr Stewart Dowrick, Chief Executive of Mid North Coast Local Health District (LHD) and Emeritus Professor Ian Wronksi, AO, Chair, Tropical Australian Academic Health Centre.

Representatives from a range of organisations and institutions, including Western NSW LHD, Orange Aboriginal Medical Service, Marathon Health Orana Haven, Royal Far West, and University of Sydney, also attended.

Guest speaker at the Summit’s dinner was IBM Sales and Creative Associate Director Ms Isabella Bain.

The outcomes from the Summit will play a key role in informing the future direction of health research across the entire University, at all its campuses and research institutes.

The Institute for Regional, Rural and Remote Health and Medical Research – a joint initiative between Charles Sturt University and Western Sydney University – will also be a major component of the direction of Charles Sturt University’s health research.

The Institute will be established at Charles Sturt’s campus in Orange and will support the Joint Program in Medicine.

Media Note:

To arrange interviews with Professor Megan Smith, contact Rebecca Akers at Charles Sturt Media on mobile 0456 377 434 or

Image note (left to right): Professor Megan Smith, Orange physician Dr Gabriel Shannon, Dean of the Charles Sturt School of Rural Medicine Professor Lesley Forster, Emeritus Professor Christina Slade from Charles Sturt, Interim Vice-Chancellor Professor John Germov and Dr Stewart Dowrick.

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