Rural Immersion Health Training Placements
Health Workforce New Zealand (HWNZ) is working with the University of Auckland (Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences) and the University of Otago (Division of Health Sciences) towards the development of a Multidisciplinary Rural Immersion Health Training Placements programme(s).
The programme will build upon the existing rural medical immersion programmes run by the two universities but will be extended to include nursing and allied health trainees.
The programme will be based at two sites; Whakatane for the University of Auckland, and Gisborne/Tairawhiti for the University of Otago. The universities will work with a number of other training providers in the creation of these two integrated rural health professional development centres.
The development of this joint programme recognises there is long standing shortage of suitably trained and experienced health professionals wanting to work in many rural communities in New Zealand. It has been acknowledged from experience overseas that one strategy to help redress these shortages is to develop rural training hubs.
The programmes propose that a residential immersion programme for integrated groups of medical, nursing, pharmacy and other students will be developed enhancing the rural health workforce of New Zealand and consequently the future health status of the communities concerned.
Work on a detailed business case and project plan is well underway and it is expected that the new programmes will commence training in time for the start of the 2012 academic year.