The University of Queensland (UQ) Rural Clinical School welcomed 27 medical students, to the Bundaberg Regional Clinical Unit this week, 10 of whom are returning after studying in Bundaberg in 2021.
The third and fourth year students will spend the year in Bundaberg for the clinical training component of UQ’s flagship Doctor of Medicine Program.
Despite another challenging start to the year, students are in good spirits as they become familiar with their new surrounds and commence the clinical skills training required for Semester 1.
Year three medical student Jack Kelso-Ribbe is excited to experience the diversity that rural medicine offers.
“Growing up in Toowoomba, I was keen to get out of Brisbane after Phase 1 medicine and explore another rural hub,” he said.
“From the different communities, patients, lifestyles, through to the clinical aspects, the range of learning opportunities presents an exciting challenge and an opportunity to grow, both personally and professionally.
“Already, 2022 threw us its first curve ball, as just getting to Bundaberg was a challenge, following major flooding over the Bruce Highway.
“I guess that’s my first lesson for rural medicine, being flexible and able to adapt to the situations that get thrown your way.”
In line with current Government requirements, the clinical unit has adapted the way in which this week’s skills sessions and activities are being delivered to ensure the safety of students, staff and the local community, whilst continuing to nurture and help students integrate into their new setting.
UQ Regional Clinical Unit Bundaberg Head Dr Therese Ryan said Bundaberg Regional Clinical Unit staff were excited to welcome students to Bundaberg for the 2022 academic year.
“We are grateful for the contribution of the local medical community who are committed to providing a quality education to our students, recognising the importance of the final years of study in producing well rounded doctors and demonstrating the rural advantage,” she said.
“UQ-led research has shown that students who study medicine in a regional, rural or remote settings for a year are four times more likely to work in a rural area, so this is a wonderful future workforce opportunity for our region.”