National Rural Health Student Network celebrates milestone

Minister for Rural Health, Fiona Nash, has congratulated the National Rural Health Student Network on 21 years of operation and the promotion of rural health careers.

Page last updated: 17 March 2016

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17 March 2016

Minister for Rural Health, Fiona Nash, today congratulated the National Rural Health Student Network (NRHSN) on 21 years of operation and the promotion of rural health careers.

“The NRHSN has more than 9,000 members studying medicine, nursing, midwifery and allied health disciplines. Collectively they provide a strong and unique voice on how we can improve health outcomes for regional and remote Australians They are the future of rural health in this country,” Minister Nash said.

“As someone who lives in and represents regional Australia, I share the common goal of ensuring our rural communities receive the support and resources they need to deliver quality health care.

“Providing the bricks and mortar for health services is only part of the job, you also need to provide training for a quality rural health workforce.

“Rural health training can bring real value to rural communities. Not only does it help grow the rural workforce, but it also helps to extend the health services available to Australians living in these areas.

“The Coalition Government is committed to addressing health workforce shortages in rural and remote areas. We are ensuring we offer opportunities to health students to train and live locally, and experience the benefits of working outside the major cities.”

Minister Nash said at the university level, the network’s 28 clubs have promoted the benefits of rural practice to university students. The clubs organise a range of activities for members including Indigenous community engagement activities, clinical skills workshops and seminars with guest speakers.

“These activities build awareness of rural health issues among members. The clubs also undertake a programme of high school visits, promoting rural health careers to rural school students.”

Minister Nash said the Coalition Government is continuing to support many initiatives to help improve the city-country divide in health services delivery by addressing workforce shortages in rural and remote areas.

“In December last year the Government announced new investments in rural training including $93.8 million over four years for the creation of a new Integrated Rural Training Pipeline that will help to retain medical graduates in rural areas by better coordinating the different stages of training within regions.

“In addition we have allocated $83.1 million over four years to effectively double the support for multidisciplinary rural training through the University Departments of Rural Health (UDRHs) and $32.3 million over four years for the establishment of three new UDRHs in areas that are not currently well-serviced through the existing UDRH network.

“People living in rural and remote areas deserve equitable access to health care compared to those living in metropolitan areas and large regional centres,” Minister Nash said.

“To do this, it means that there must be enough health professionals choosing to live and work in rural areas and organisations like the National Rural Health Student Network play a major role is attracting more health professionals to work in rural and remote Australia.

“I look forward to working with the National Rural Health Students Health Network into the future as they help shape the health landscape for Australia.”

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122 LotusScript compilation error for Block Component: block-ministers-display-dates: $EXECUTE$+116: Object variable not set - cannot continue.

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