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Rural and Regional Placement

During your degree you may undertake professional experience placement in both a metropolitan and rural/remote setting. It is important that you have a broad range of experiences and opportunities to apply your theory and become job ready.

The Commonwealth Government is seeking to increase the number of rural origin health and medical students through the Rural Health Multidisciplinary Training (RHMT) Program.

Both rural/remote and metropolitan placements have their benefits. Here are some of the benefits associated with rural placement.

You will experience first hand the lifestyle and work environment in a rural setting. Many practitioners who choose to work in a rural setting do so for the great work/life balance.

Attending PEP in a rural setting allows you to experience firsthand the work / life balance a rural placement and lifestyle has to offer. There is a closeness to beaches, mountains and everything small communities have to offer. Find out more about what previous UTAS students have had to say.

Rural Health Centres tend to be multidisciplinary. This means that you are exposed to a diverse range of experiences, which expands your knowledge and capabilities.

Multidisciplinary health care is at the forefront within rural communities. This means that on a rural placement you may be exposed to a diverse range of experiences, practising along-side an interdisciplinary team as you expand your knowledge and capabilities.

Read about paramedic Shane Bones, psychologist Caroline Macleod and nursing student Caitlin Tucker among all the other valuable stories and videos in this section to find out more on previous students’ rural placement experiences.

There is a shortage of rural health professionals. Experiencing rural practice and engaging with a rural community could entice you to work in that community later on.

Experiencing practice in a rural setting and engaging with members of the community could entice you to work there once you complete your course. Make the most of your placement, be flexible and take advantage of any opportunities that are presented to you – with in your scope of course – and participate in as many community events as possible. There are some wise words from previous student experiences in the stories and videos section of the Placement Experience tab in particular, GP Dr Chris Hughes, who now works in a rural setting.

HR+ is a not for profit incorporated association contracted by the Australian government to recruit and retain general practitioners, nursing and allied health professionals in Tasmania, with an emphasis on rural and remote communities. Visit HR+ for more information.

You will be supported on PEP every step of the way. There is your unit coordinator; on ground UTAS staff like Fieldwork Coordinators, WOCFs and Lead Facilitators; and of course, your placement supervisor. There may also be other students on placement in the same location. UTAS staff are there to help you succeed in your placement. So, no matter what you may need, use the resources on this website and ask for support.

Being on placement can be a daunting experience if you are away from home, family, friends and familiar surroundings. This can especially be true in a more rural or remote setting.

You can become a member of the National Rural Health Student Network (NTHSN) and connect with other health students in rural and remote Australia. Watch the YouTube clip on the NRHSN website under the About Us tab. Tasmania’s NRHSN is Rustica, and you can join to connect with other health students, make friends and have fun. When you stay in UTAS shared accommodation there are also great opportunities to connect with other College of Health and Medicine students from Tasmania and also students from interstate universities.

Get connected, stay connected and make the most of your rural PEP.

There are so many great experiences to be had in rural areas. A rural placement provides an opportunity to get amongst great tourism opportunities in places that you otherwise might not visit. It might be a different type of shop you find or a local food or beverage you’ve never tried before, a local walking club, mountain biking, tennis or other sporting activities. There will be many friendly faces to help you find your way in their area. Make the most of your placement and the accompanying down time. Immerse yourself in the community and see what it has to offer.

For more information on the rural professional experience visit:
Advice and information on travelling to placements:

Accommodation In Rural Tasmania

The University of Tasmania's Centre for Rural Health (CRH) offers accommodation and support for students going on a rural placement in Tasmania. The accommodation is generally located close to health facilities and services, and is offered on a share basis. Rooms are limited, so book early.

You do not have to stay at the university accommodation, you are welcome to source and book your accommodation elsewhere (at your cost) or stay with family and friends.

You can book your accommodation: Accommodation Booking Form

If your placement is in a rural area, the Centre for Rural Health will send you an email regarding accommodation and financial support, and instructions on how to book.

You will receive an email confirming your booking and an information pack will be sent to you in the mail. The information pack includes a site-specific Property Fact Sheet.

Your accommodation information pack includes a Property Fact Sheet containing important information about your accommodation. The Property Fact Sheet contains the property address, the Property Manager's contact details, a list of nearby health facilities, Internet passwords, and site specific advice such as car parking restrictions and rubbish collection days.

House rules have been developed to ensure that all residents have an enjoyable and safe stay. Find them in the accommodation guide.

Banner image credit: Wai Nang Poon