Students benefit from Armidale Medical Conference

Published 04 November 2010

shemartinStudent doctors and nurses had an opportunity to meet and talk to a range of experienced practitioners in their fields during the second annual Armidale Medical Conference at the University of New England last Saturday (30 October).

They also had the opportunity to listen to talks presented by practitioners who will be teaching fourth-year students from UNE’s School of Rural Medicine at the newly-established Tablelands Clinical School next year.

The Clinical Dean of the Tablelands Clinical School, Dr Maree Puxty, who organised the conference with the assistance of Angell Harris, gave the participants an “Update on the Clinical School”. The Tablelands Clinical School is being established at Armidale Hospital, with funding from the Commonwealth Government, to improve the region’s clinical capacity and increase access for its students to high-quality teaching staff.

The other talks on Saturday morning covered medical topics from mental illness (presented by Associate Professor Saroja Krishnaswamy) to skin grafting (presented by Associate Professor Hans Dahl). The speakers – all of them local medical specialists and/or academics – also included Dr Nihad Abu-Asab, Dr John Flynn, Associate Professor Liz Cotterell, Ms Helena Sanderson and Mrs Natasha Scully. The Head of UNE’s School of Rural Medicine, Professor John Fraser, gave a “Welcome Address”.

After lunch the conference participants were involved in exercises simulating the resuscitation of a new-born baby (led by Dr Cotterell) and an adult (led by Dr Rod Martin), and the care of a patient in intensive care.

Dr Puxty said that all the participants had enjoyed the simulation sessions, and that the conference as a whole had been a success. “Because we had great sponsorship, we were able to present it free of charge to the participants,” she said. The sponsors included UNE, GP Synergy, Laerdal, Verathon Medical, Glaxo Smith Kline, Hunter New England Health, NSW Health, and the New England Division of General Practice.

THE PHOTOGRAPH displayed here shows second-year medical student David She (left) involved in a resuscitation exercise led by Dr Rod Martin (right). It expands to include Lieu Nguyen (left), another second-year medical student, and Hanna Martensson from Verathon Medical.