Inverell has provided a wonderful learning environment for local GP Dr Mary Elsley.
Performing well in her final GP training exams she has every intention of staying locally and continuing to work at Armajun Aboriginal Health Service.
“I’ve really enjoyed training here, firstly at Inverell Medical Centre and then Armajun Aboriginal Health Service,” Dr Elsley said.
“I’ve had great supervision and educational opportunities.
“It’s a fantastic local community in which to become involved, and I feel like I can make a real difference for my patients.”
CEO of regional GP training organisation GP Synergy, Georgina van de Water, said they are currently coordinating 54 GP registrars training in the New England/Northwest subregion and five in Inverell.
“GP trainees have the option to train in a specialised Aboriginal health training posts during their training.
“We’re proud to work closely with 33 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, including Armajun Aboriginal Health Service, to deliver GP training in 64 accredited Aboriginal health facilities across NSW and ACT.
“Since 2016, more than 300 GP registrars have completed a placement in an Aboriginal health training facility, undertaking a staggering 624,000 consultations.
“Feedback from doctors training in these facilities is extremely positive, and we attribute this to the strong partnership we have with the Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service sector,” Mrs van de Water said.
During her training with GP Synergy to become a specialist GP, Dr Elsley gained additional skills in diabetes while based at Armajun Aboriginal Health Service.
“I was motivated to extend my skills in managing diabetes as there is a large burden of diabetes in our local Aboriginal population, with many opportunities to improve care.
“I also had an existing interest in diabetes as it runs in my family,” Dr Elsley said.
Armajun Aboriginal Health Service CEO, Debbie McCowen, said being an accredited GP Synergy training practice is important to the local community.
“At Armajun Aboriginal Health Service here in Inverell we’ve been continuously accredited for GP training since 2011 and over the years we’ve trained more than 20 doctors,” Ms McCowen said.
“More recently we also attained accreditation for our Armidale facility and have also been able to train doctors there.
“The trainee GPs provide additional health care to the community, while learning about the challenges in Aboriginal health firsthand.”
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Kerryn Stephens | Media and Communications Officer