Physician Training in Northern Queensland


I first came to Australia ten years ago to
the Sunshine Coast. But I really wanted to experience tropical medicine and a more rural
location. So I made my way north as a Registrar before completing my training in infectious
diseases. But really nothing compared so after working down south, I really missed what Far
North Queensland had to offer. One of the main advantages from a medical
perspective in working in Far North Queensland is that you do have the opportunity to see
a lot of particularly interesting infectious disease admissions. We’ve had people admitted
with malaria, melioidosis, leptospirosis and other tropical infections.
You get quite a general exposure to clinical scenarios and clinical problems. Often you’re
expected to chip in and help everyone else out and so you get this breadth of exposure
to lots of different people with lots of different medical problems.
Another thing that’s quite different is that a lot of patients due to the remoteness of
the area that we cover is that some patients do present quite late in their illness which
allows you to see quite good pathology and get that experience with dealing with very
sick and complex patients. With all of our basic physician trainees,
they will be able to rotate through at least six months of sub-specialty training during
their basic physician training and you’re able to do all of your basic physician training
in northern Queensland. The only requirement would be to go to a small rural hospital for
a period of three months. And to be able to provide medical services to these communities
is very fulfilling. I’ve always felt very well supported in all
of my rotations that I’ve done up here both as a junior doctor and also as part of my
basic training. I’ve had a number of different learning opportunities. I’ve worked in rural
areas. Doing rural time has further enabled me to build my confidence in dealing with
more complicated patients. As a trainee here, you have opportunity to
travel to remote Indigenous communities and provide medical support. That includes Thursday
Island, Bamaga, and all the areas in the Cape York Peninsula.
I’ve always had very good consultants that are very humble very approachable, which is
why I try and learn as much as I could from them. So I was recently given an award for
research within the department of medicine. There are a lot of very good research opportunities
and a lot of consultants that are very interested in research.
In northern Queensland, every day is a great day. It’s always beautiful weather. So I guess
with spare time you’ll usually find me on the beach, casting a line or out there on
the reef fishing for some spanish mackerel or some big cold trout.
I’ve played netball since I was seven years old so it’s always something that I’ve loved.
This year I joined a team without knowing anyone within my team and the club was very
welcoming. Everyone’s really happy and really supportive
and everyone has that same goal to improve the care of people living up here. If you
show an interest and want to live here and stay even longer well, everyone’s even happier
about that.

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