Funding boost for rural health services

14 Mar 2019
Hon. David Littleproud MP, Senator Bridget McKenzie and Associate Professor Geoff Argus
Hon. David Littleproud MP, Senator Bridget McKenzie and Associate Professor Geoff Argus look over the Charleville training centre plans.

The outback town of Charleville is set to become a major rural health training hub thanks to Federal Government funding for The University of Queensland (UQ) to build a $2.5 million state-of-the-art clinical training facility.

The new facility will be operated by Southern Queensland Rural Health (SQRH), a collaboration between UQ, the University of Southern Queensland, Darling Downs Health, and South West Hospital and Health Service.

SQRH Director Associate Professor Geoff Argus said the facility will support high quality clinical training of nurses, midwives and allied health students in south western Queensland whilst giving them a taste of life in a rural town.

“Attracting health students to train and work in remote and regional areas is a key priority for SQRH,” Associate Professor Argus said.

“We want to deliver effective, high quality rural training experiences which engage the local community and encourage students to return to work in a regional area after they graduate."

The facility will include a clinical education simulation room, tutorial rooms, telehealth capabilities and consultation rooms, bringing more health professionals to the area, providing employment opportunities and improving local health care services.

UQ Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences’ Executive Dean Professor Bruce Abernethy said the investment will have a very positive effect on rural health across remote and regional Queensland.

“As well as the social and economic benefits for the local Charleville community, this project will identify Charleville as a key location for training and supporting the future rural health workforce,” Professor Abernethy said.

Planning for the design of the new facility has already begun with an expected project completion date at the end of the year.

Media: Sonia Wood, Southern Queensland Rural Health, +61 437 029 792 or Jo Hickman, UQ Communications,