Archive | Medical Students

Rural Week in Nova Scotia

Good luck to our colleagues at the Dalhousie Medical School, in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia.  Today is the first day of their Rural Week,  an organised programme for newer medical students to experience rural practice.

As well as the anticipated effect for recruitment of future rural doctors, they also feel that it is vital that all doctors gain exposure to the challenges of rural practice, so that there is better understanding if they follow a more urban or centralised career pathway.

The video below explains the programme, and has contributions from both staff and students.  Please leave a comment or contact us directly if you know of other projects like this where you work.  A recent article in the Canadian Journal of Rural Medicine by Dr Roderick Cheung highlights the importance of these weeks in providing early inspiration.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjV942e5V48

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Rural Opportunities in Scotland

NHS Education for Scotland has released a new DVD about opportunities for various healthcare careers within rural areas.  It’s part of the Remote and Rural Healthcare Educational Alliance (RRHEAL), an initiative to improve training and development of healthcare teams across rural Scotland.

The first part of the video focusses on dentistry; there are subsequent interviews with Charlie Siderfin (GP Postgraduate Tutor, Orkney), Chris Williams (GP Trainee, Orkney) and David Sedgwick (Consultant Surgeon, Fort William).  If you can’t see the video below, you might need to visit this page on Vimeo.

The next round of GP Rural Fellowships – ideal for recently qualified GPs – will be released soon on the NES website.  You can read more about these fellowships here.

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Study: Rural Placements for UK Medical Students

It’s increasingly recognised that rural practice can offer undergraduate medical students excellent learning opportunities, with higher-than-average satisfaction compared with their urban counterparts.  There can be many reasons for this, not least that students are often forced into immersing themselves in the local community, as a rural placement will normally involve staying within the locality, instead of being able to return home from an urban practice which is normally easier to commute to.

Furthermore, there is good evidence that giving students a good experience of rural practice during the early stages of their careers, stimulates a considerable number of them to seriously consider taking up rural posts once more qualified.  That’s certainly the case in my experience, when a fulfilling 5 week placement at the Group Practice in Stornoway made me think more about rural general practice as a career option.

However, how rural practice is offered to undergraduates, is implemented in many different ways across the UK.  Of course, that is no bad thing, but we are starting to better understand the relationship between early student experiences and later career choice.

This piece of research from the IRH considers the rural practice opportunities for students at Keele University, and reports on some of the key findings from conversations with students who have benefitted from such placements.

>> Rural and Remote Health Journal – View Article.

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Conference Focus: Clinical Skills Unit

skillunit3The Rural Forum are pleased to confirm that the Clinical Skills Unit will be in attendance at the RCGP Annual Conference, in Glasgow on November 5th-7th.  The unit comes in the form of an articulated lorry, containing a clinical environment where resuscitation and surgical procedures can be practised.

skillunit2

It carries an impressive range of simulation models, which can be controlled by a team concealed within a separate room, allowing adult and paediatric resuscitation scenarios to be played with maximum realism.  Models are available for CV and arterial line insertion.  Procedures such as cannulation, chest drain insertion and intubation are possible too.

skillunit1

The Unit, funded by NES (NHS Education Scotland) has already embarked on a tour of Scotland, with further dates and venues planned for the next few months, details of which are available from the website.  The Unit is a 2-year pilot project funded by NES – if you want to take a look, and think about booking a visit for your area, watch out for it at the conference.

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