$3.8 Million Investment to Boost Medical Training in Wagga Wagga

More medical students will study at the University of Notre Dame Australia’s (UNDA) Rural Clinical School campus in Wagga Wagga following the opening of its new training facility.

Page last updated: 04 August 2014

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4 August 2014

More medical students will study at the University of Notre Dame Australia’s (UNDA) Rural Clinical School campus in Wagga Wagga following the opening of its new training facility, the Assistant Minister for Health Fiona Nash said today.

Officially opening the training and administrative building in Hardy Street today, Minister Nash said the Government had invested almost $3.8 million to establish the state-of-the-art medical teaching campus.

Member for Riverina Michael McCormack welcomed the investment in Wagga Wagga’s medical training infrastructure.

“This Australian Government investment ensures more medical students can train and live locally and, importantly, receive experience working outside the major cities,” Mr McCormack said.

“Research shows that trainee health professionals often choose to work in the communities where they complete their training. This is good news for country areas,” he said.

Minister Nash said next year, the campus would support 12 full-time medical students, including six third-year students and six students completing their fourth and final year of study.

“The additional places mean that more trainees will be able to complete the clinical training components of their medical education outside a major city,” she said. “Eight former students who studied at the Wagga Wagga campus over the past two years are already undertaking their internships locally.”

As part of their education, students provide health services to local people through the Calvary Hospital and in community health services.

“This is great news for Wagga Wagga patients as it helps to take some of the pressure off existing health services,” Mr McCormack said.
The Government has committed a further $3.4 million to the UNDA in 2014-15 to help it operate its three campuses in Wagga Wagga, Lithgow and Ballarat. Almost $400,000 was also provided last year to purchase three state-of-the-art simulation mannequins that will provide students with realistic training scenarios.

This year alone, 28 students are expected to complete a full year placement across the UNDA’s three Rural Clinical School campuses, Minister Nash said.

She said the UNDA’s Rural Clinical School is one of 17 supported by the Australian Government under the Rural Clinical Training and Support (RCTS) programme. In 2013, approximately 874 students were training at a rural clinical school nationally.

Wagga Wagga is also home to Australia’s first Rural Clinical School, which is run by the University of New South Wales.

Minister’s media contact: Carolyn Martin 02 6277 7440 / 0417 966 328.
Mr McCormack’s media contact: Dom Hopkinson 02 6921 4600 / 0439 550 506.

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