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Medical Students Hit Merredin

Published on Tuesday, 24 March 2020 at 2:31:08 PM

By Hannah Martin

On March 10 a group of students travelled to Merredin as part of the 2020 Wheatbelt Medical Students Immersion program. The program was reinstated by the Wheatbelt Eastern Regional Organisation of Councils (WEROC) several years ago in conjunction with Rural Health West and is designed to provide students with the opportunity to experience life in the country and to gain a greater understanding of rural life and healthcare.

The students consisted of first year students from Notre Dame and Curtin University. Over the week they were staying in Merredin, the students visited Karis Medical Centre, the local schools, and the hospital. They explored the Railway Museum and travelled to a local farm where they learnt about farming culture and participated in a ‘safety’ tour. The students also visited St John’s as well as Amity Health and the Men’s Shed.

On Thursday evening, the students hosted a community ‘thank you’ dinner at Cummins Theatre for their billet families, as well as all of the community members that they met along the way.

The Wheatbelt Medical Students Immersion program is an important initiative that seeks to attract ‘home grown’ doctors back to rural communities. Rural Health West acknowledges that ‘although many of the students will end up practising in City areas, the program will have provided them with firsthand knowledge of the tests and limitations facing rural patients, which will benefit treatment plans and patient care.’

A program of this magnitude wouldn’t be possible without the various community members and volunteers that offered their time and assistance. The Shire would like to thank all those that were involved in this program to any capacity.

Billeting students is an enriching opportunity for both the student and the billeting family. If anyone is interested in billeting next year’s medical students please contact Hannah at the Shire on 9041 1611.


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