Dr Paul Barnett is training on the Far South Coast of NSW and relishes being able to go for a surf before and after work, his supervisor Dr Gudrun (Gundi) Muller-Grotjan has lived all over the world but has fallen in love with the small town of Narooma.
Training in general practices in Narooma and Bermagui, Dr Paul Barnett is enjoying the beach and surf, as well as his work as a GP.
Now in his third term of training his long-term aim is to be a country GP.
“I had thought about working in a hospital setting but general practice provides continuity of care to patients, a wide range of presentations as well as flexibility.
“Working as a GP registrar enables me to live in a beautiful place like Narooma.
“Narooma is not too isolated but is far enough away to be out of the rat-race, I can walk to work, and I never have to wait at traffic lights.
“I’m thoroughly enjoying my training, the community is friendly and welcoming, it’s a beautiful part of NSW and there are also plenty of fun things to do,” he said.
Lifestyle was also a factor in Dr Muller-Grotjan choosing to be a rural GP, and as a GP supervisor she appreciates the importance to small communities of training registrars.
“Registrars bring new life and up-to-date knowledge – all our registrars are funny, intelligent, interesting people and have become valued members of our community.
“Supervising forces me to stay on top of evidence-based medicine and I constantly learn new perspectives from my registrars.
“In addition to factual knowledge I try to teach my registrars the essence of rural general practice which is making a difference in people’s lives.
“When one of my complex patients recently asked which surgery to go to when he moved away from the area I suggested he look for a surgery that teaches registrars and students – I think that is the best guarantee of getting best quality care!” she said.