The rural placement support program that has your back!
The Allied Health Rural Clinical Placement Support Program provides financial support to allied health students completing a rural clinical placement in rural Western Australia.
Rural Health West can award up to $800 to eligible students depending on placement location, type of placement and availability of funding.
To be eligible you must be a member of a student rural health club (WAALHIIBE or SPINRPHEX), be undertaking a clinical placement in a MM3-7 location and be studying one of the following health disciplines:
- Exercise physiology
- Health science/Health promotion
- Occupational therapy
- Social work
- Speech pathology
I completed my final placement in Broome as a fourth year Occupational Therapy student. This placement was student-led and involved working with Aboriginal adolescents.
I feel very fortunate to have experienced life in a remote town and have developed a deep respect for the rich culture and community. I recognise that in more recent years, we have fallen short in meeting the goals in the Close the Gap campaign. I am dedicated to being a part of the positive change in Australian health care to improve the quality of life for Aboriginal peoples.
Occupational Therapy student (Curtin University)
Spending 20 weeks working as a Speech Pathologist in a rural setting not only extended my clinical knowledge and skills but also created a desire within me to work in a rural setting.
I realised that there might be some differences in practise in a rural area but hadn’t really understood what this would be like. During my time in Geraldton, I was able to see the impact that occurs when people don’t have the access to health care that I am used to living in Perth. These experiences have led me to accept a Speech Pathology position working with an organisation that is as passionate as I am supporting rural communities.
Speech pathology student (Curtin University)
I recently completed a rural placement with WA Centre for Rural Health (WACRH) in Geraldton. This was a very rewarding opportunity for me as a physiotherapy student as I experienced a variety of clinical situations and settings. We were able to contribute to many different organisations throughout the city. One of the main ones was the Geraldton Regional Aboriginal Medical Service (GRAMS), where we took on our own patients in the gym facility participating in a program called ‘Getting Stronger’. This rural placement helped me to grow physically in my treatment skills, emotionally in patient interaction and mentally in dealing with difficult situations.
Physiotherapy student (The University of Notre Dame)
Completing a rural clinical placement was an invaluable experience. Prior to flying to Karratha for my clinical placement I did not have much experience living in a rural town, so I did not know what to expect. Completing a rural clinical placement really showed me how a team of health professionals work together to provide care to patients. All of the health professionals at my placement sites worked amazingly as a multidisciplinary team and wanted to share their knowledge and skills with me. I highly recommend completing a rural clinical placement, as it is an experience that provides you with skills that you don’t develop in the metropolitan area. For example, my cultural competency development increased drastically, and I left my rural clinical placement feeling more confident in my ability to provide culturally safe care.
Dietetics student (Curtin University)