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New $4.2m UQ medical center to boost rural doctor numbers
Date:7/24/2008

The University of Queensland is helping to increase medical support in rural communities through its new $4.2 million advanced clinical training facility.

UQ's Rural Clinical School, the biggest in Australia, has added a Teaching and Learning Centre to its portfolio, with space to accommodate up to 80 students.

The Centre, adjacent to the Toowoomba Base Hospital in West Street, will provide third and fourth year medical students with access to state-of-the-art teaching spaces, a dedicated Clinical Skills Laboratory, advanced audiovisual equipment, 24-hour computer lab and a Lectopia educational recording system.

UQ Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Greenfield said the University was confident the new infrastructure, combined with expansion in the Rural Clinical School's other areas including Rockhampton, Bundaberg and Hervey Bay-Maryborough, would give students an added incentive to try a rural clinical experience.

"We've invested a total of more than $13 million in the Rural Clinical School's teaching and learning infrastructure, libraries and student accommodation over the past six years," Professor Greenfield said.

"Being Australia's largest rural clinical school, in the nation's largest medical school, it has the potential to make a tangible impact on the medical workforce shortage in rural areas."

Professor David Wilkinson, Head of the School of Medicine, said UQ would work in collaboration with the Toowoomba Health Service District and the Clinical Skills Centre at the Royal Brisbane & Women's Hospital to position Toowoomba as an advanced clinical training centre.

Professor Wilkinson said many general practices in Toowoomba had closed their books to new patients which placed a significant strain on local emergency departments.

He said the new Teaching and Learning Centre would allow the School to provide a positive clinical training experience, which was known to increase rural m
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Contact: Eliza Plant
e.plant@uq.edu.au
61-733-652-619
Research Australia
Source:Eurekalert

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