Flinders’ rural doctor training program extends to Barossa Valley

Flinders University’s ground-breaking rural medical training program has a new frontier – the Barossa Valley.

The Parallel Rural Community Curriculum (PRCC), first established in the Riverland in 1997, is an innovative Commonwealth-funded program that places medical students in rural settings for an entire year. Each student in the program is attached to a rural general practice, enabling them to learn all of their medicine, surgery, paediatrics, obstetrics and gynaecology, general practice and psychiatry in an integrated way throughout the year.

The Acting Director of the Rural Clinical Program, Dr Jennene Greenhill, said the program has been highly successful in increasing numbers of rural doctors by providing students with a thorough grounding in the demands of rural practice.

“We are already established in the Riverland, the Greater Green Triangle and the Hills-Mallee-Murray regions, and the Barossa program is an exciting new venture that expands the boundaries of the PRCC,” she said.

Barossa program staff will be based in Angaston, and eight students will be located in Gawler, Nuriootpa, Angaston, Tanunda and Kapunda. For the first time, students from Adelaide University’s Medical School will join the program.

Students, staff and local participants will celebrate the commencement of the new program at a dinner in the Barossa on Friday night.

The program is also seeking community mentors for the students. Local people who are interested in helping to round out the students’ experience of the Barossa community can contact the Rural Clinical School on (08) 8204 4632.

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