Dr Sally Johnson grew up on a property outside of Walgett and is passionate about ensuring rural communities have opportunities for high quality health care.
Tell us about your background
I’m a country girl born and bred. I grew up on a property outside of Walgett, we were 70 km from town. I went to university in Sydney and once I had the opportunity I jumped across to the rural school and spent my remaining three years of uni in Wagga Wagga.
From there I’ve been working at Wagga Wagga Base Hospital for the last three years and I’m finally starting my GP training, and Cootamundra it is!
What made you decide to become a GP?
The main reason I chose general practice is because of the variety, you never know what’s going to walk through the door and with rural general practice you get that really good mix of acute and chronic medicine so it keeps it interesting.
I’ve also spent the last 12 months doing my obstetrics diploma, I’m just about finished and when it’s all signed off, I’d love to practice obstetrics in Cootamundra as well.
Why did you decide to become a GP obstetrician?
Towards the end of my uni degree I met an amazing GP obstetrician who very much took me under his wing and just basically provided an example of what you can do as a GP obstetrician and that model worked really well for me, I loved the fact that you can provide that continuity of care for women.
It provides the perfect opportunity to continue care after the pregnancy, looking after a new person, and maybe supporting the mum through later pregnancies as well.
Why did you deciside to train in Murrumbidgee & ACT?
I really enjoyed that Wagga Wagga was such a big centre, but it wasn’t so big that you started to become sub-specialised. So you get a lot of good general medicine and I had that exposure early in my career.
The general practice is still quite generalised, it’s not just your coughs and colds, it provided such a good opportunity for good general medicine and the fact it’s got all these peripheral sites like Cootamundra and Temora that you can still use all of your emergency skills and that good general medicine and still know who to refer to in the bigger centre of Wagga Wagga.