The shortage of doctors in rural areas is being addressed by the Federal Government with the announcement of the establishment of a committee to advise the Minister on the setting up of a Rural Clinical School to be based in Wagga Wagga.
The School, which will support the training of University of New South Wales medical students as well as other health service professionals in South Western NSW, has received strong support from Charles Sturt University, in conjunction with Member for Riverina, Kay Hull.
CSU Vice-Chancellor Professor Cliff Blake said the announcement made by Federal Health Minister Dr Michael Wooldridge this week, is part of a Commonwealth Government strategy to address the rural doctor shortage and provide support to rural practitioners.
"CSU welcomes this development by the Government and pledges full support in implementing such an important initiative," he said.
"This development complements a number of strategies CSU has put in place over the last 10 years providing a range of health education courses from its regional campuses, including radiography, pharmacy, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, emergency management, health services management, pre-hospital care and from 2000, the introduction of dietetics.
"We welcome the assurance given by the Minister that the Rural Clinical School will not duplicate existing training facilities but draw on the extensive education services already in place, building on the strong relationship that exists between CSU and regional health providers.
"With campuses in Albury-Wodonga, Bathurst, Dubbo and Wagga Wagga, CSU is in a unique position to support this recent development in the areas it serves across Central and Western NSW."