Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) in partnership with the Manitoba Health Care Providers Network and Max Rady College of Medicine, Faculty of Sciences, hosted the U of M medical Student Rural Interest Group on January 25/26, 2019.
The Rural Interest Group (RIG) weekend initiative promoted the benefits of practicing medicine in rural communities. Some 48 first and second-year medical students split their time this year between the communities of Brandon and Minnedosa.
PMH VP of Medical and Diagnostic Services Dr. Shaun Gauthier says the RIG workshop assists the health region by engaging medical students early in their training.
“This is always an excellent chance for the medical students to see what opportunities —both work and lifestyle-related— await within our region. Students appreciated the network of services that are available within Brandon Regional Health Centre as well as the wide scope of practice of rural physicians in tight-knit communities like Minnedosa,” Gauthier stated.
The Rural Interest Group has been a mainstay at visiting Brandon Regional Health Centre (BRHC) since 2010. The region has also helped pair smaller rural communities into the event plan, having hosted students in Killarney, Neepawa, Souris, Swan River and Virden in previous years. Dauphin was part of original RIG visits prior to 2010.
Clinical workstations were located at BRHC, the Minnedosa Health Centre and Dr. Ajai Khandelwal Primary Care Centre (PCC) in Minnedosa. The relatively new PCC just opened this past September. Medical students put their skills to the test at the workstations doing everything from sutures to putting casts on their colleagues.
Manitoba Health Care Provider Network (MHCP) Project Coordinator Wayne Heide says students always look forward to the weekend event.
“Getting medical students into rural communities for first-hand view of how medicine is practiced outside of Winnipeg is an invaluable part of Manitoba’s physician recruitment strategy. Showing them all rural Manitoba has to offer both professionally and personally is one of the best tools we have to recruit to the variety of sites in Manitoba,” Heide added.
Student RIG Co-Presidents Justin Feilberg and Mikayla Gawiak said medical students were very appreciative to be able to participate in such a well-organized event.
“This trip continues to be a perennial favourite with the students, having a history of offering excellent opportunities for experiencing the rural medicine dynamic, clinical skill building, networking with local physicians, and as always, part of a very fun and informal environment."
Both MHCPN and Prairie Mountain Health thank PMH physicians, staff and volunteers who helped make the annual workshop a success again this year.
First and second-year medical students put their intubation skills to the test at Brandon Regional Health Centre January 26, 2019.
First and second-year medical students put their casting skills to the test at Minnedosa Health Centre January 26, 2019.