The Going Rural Health Newsletter
Edition 17 - October 2021
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Welcome to Going Rural Health News! Going Rural Health News is the publication of new and relevant information about all things related to rural clinical placements, education and rural health, from the Going Rural Health team. Team members are located in Ballarat, Shepparton and Wangaratta.

We've had a bit of excitement recently not related to COVID-19. A statewide (and felt in NSW, Tasmania and SA) earthquake, with an epicentre near Mansfield. It was quite unnerving to experience. Hopefully all are ok and no-one was injured as a result.

Most of regional and rural Victoria has enjoyed a slight relaxation in restrictions recently. With vaccination rates increasing, and many rural areas leading the way, an end of lockdowns is in sight.

We encourage everyone to stay safe - socially distance, wear a mask when required, wash your hands, follow the restrictions, and get vaccinated when you can. It's the best way to protect our vulnerable community members and not overload our healthcare frontline workers - the heroes of this pandemic. 

 The Going Rural Health team

In this month's edition:

Going Rural Health student support

Farewell Mitchell Dunn

Farewell Cathy Jarred

Student Upcoming social event - Virtual Coffee Tasting

Going Rural Health Extended Rural Immersion Clinic (ERIC)

Going Rural Health Mentoring Program

The Going Rural Health Blog

Going Rural Health Education & University of Melbourne Department of Rural Health Webinars

External Education & Resources

Going Rural Health and University Department of Rural Health (UDRH) Research

Going Rural Health Website

Going Rural Health Student Support

Going Rural Health supports students to complete rural clinical placements. Support includes financial assistance, subsidised accommodation in selected areas, education, mentoring support, student activities, & cultural training.  For financial assistance, eligible students may only receive EITHER subsidised accommodation at University of Melbourne owned housing (where available, subject to availability) OR a financial payment for their placement (not both). Financial payment is calculated per day of attendance at placement.

More information on the Going Rural Health Student Support Scheme, including how to apply, eligibility criteria and the full details of 2021 changes, is available HERE.

As always, we are trying to ensure that students get the best placement experience possible. Please help us to do this by directing students to complete our Student Placement Survey. It is a short online survey that should only take students 10-15 minutes to complete.

Farewell Mitchell Dunn



The Going Rural Health team were sad to farewell Shepparton team member Mitchell Dunn recently. Mitchell joined the team in the midst of last year's long lockdown, and implemented a number of projects for the team, including the ERIC program for physiotherapy students,  and the mentorship program.


Mitchell has taken a position as head of Allied Health at Shepparton Private Hospital, and the team will continue to to work with him to support student placements at the hospital.


All the best with your new role Mitch - you and Agnes will be missed!

Farewell Cathy Jarred

The Going Rural Health Student Placement Administrator, Cathy Jarred, will be finishing up with the team this Friday October 1st, to take on a new role closer to home.

Cathy has been with the team for around 2 years, and in that time has been invaluable to the smooth running of our program, including the allocation of student support funds.

Thanks for all your hard work Cathy - you will be missed. All the best with your new role!

Student Upcoming Social Event - Virtual Coffee Tasting

Going Rural Health will be hosting a virtual coffee tasting event for students on the 29th of September at 7.30pm, tasting coffee from a local Victorian coffee roaster. The date has been extended to allow for coffee packs to arrive at collection points (due to postal delays).


Pick up points are University of Melbourne rural campuses - Ballarat, Shepparton & Wangaratta. Registrants will need to be able to pick up these packs on the 28th or 29th of September from these locations.


Bookings essential. Please register by sample pick up site via links below, no later than 12pm on the 29th of September. Hurry, numbers limited!

Ballarat bookings: https://tinyurl.com/vwhrpfzs

Shepparton bookings: https://tinyurl.com/rrrw5mh8

Wangaratta bookings: https://tinyurl.com/4z8nc4ej

NOTE: Bendigo bookings have now closed, as there is no longer time to get tasting packs to site.


Contact Trish Thorpe with any queries at trish.thorpe@unimelb.edu.au

Going Rural Health Extended Rural Immersion Clinic (ERIC)

In 2021, Going Rural Health have organised a new 'Extended Rural Immersion Clinic' (ERIC) for physiotherapy students. 


ERIC students complete multiple consecutive rural placements over an extended period, from 10-20 weeks, to immerse the students in the rural community. Emerging research evidence shows that immersion placements for nursing and allied health students are more likely to result in students working in rural locations.


If your organisation would like to participate in this program, please contact the Going Rural Health team at going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au


Going Rural Health Mentorship Program - ELEN

The Going Rural Health Emerging Leaders Engagement Network (ELEN), is an exciting, new, & interdisciplinary career-development mentorship program, aimed at linking new graduate, early career, and intern rural health clinicians, with experienced and accomplished professionals working in country Victoria.

If you are a novice rural health practitioner interested in gaining insight into how to build your career in rural health, or ELEN’s next superstar mentor, then you are encouraged to register by emailing a short expression of interest detailing who you are, your professional background, and motivation to be a part of the program to: going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au

The Going Rural Health Blog

Did you know that Going Rural Health has a blog? The blog contains posts on relevant rural, rural health, student placement, and education topics. There are also posts about self-care, particularly relevant for students on rural placement. Authors are Going Rural Health health professional staff, with the occasional guest blogger.

Our most recent blog posts can be accessed below. New blog posts are posted on our Facebook page and tweeted on Twitter.

Lockdown Fatigue
Lockdown fatigue - is it a 'thing'?
Looking After Yourself on Rural Placements
Here are some resources to help you look after yourself better while on a rural placement.
Speech Pathology Week 2021
Speech Pathology Week 2021 - Communication is everyone's right
Overwhelmed? Lean on your people
Feeling overwhelmed during your rural placement? Lean on your 'people' - including the Going Rural Health team.
Facebook Twitter
Going Rural Health Education

Online Going Rural Health Education

The NEW Going Rural Health Learning Centre has been launched!

Going Rural Health have just launched a new Learning Centre on the Going Rural Health website. Access the new Learning Centre HERE. Get on an have a look! All current courses are free.

Participants will need to register for the website, log-in and enroll in courses. Certificates of completion will be automatically generated upon successful completion of courses. If you have any problems with this process please contact the team at going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au

Courses will be added as they are released, but the site currently has 6 courses live:

  • Online Introduction to Rural Practice: this is our updated course introducing students and new staff to practicing in a rural community. Great for those new to rural health.
  • Wellbeing and Resilience: an updated version of our Resilience module, the course has been moved to the Learning Centre for easier access. Health professionals - including health students - as a group don't tend to look after themselves well; this course gives insight and tips as to how to look after ourselves better.
  • Giving and Receiving Effective Feedback: This is a combination of our original two separate courses (Giving Feedback, and Receiving Feedback), as much of the content was similar. Provides tips to better receive feedback, especially if it is negative, and ways to provide more effective feedback to staff and students.
  • Communication: Tools to optimise your communication skills and ensure the perceived message is the intended message.
  • NEW: Social Media Posting for Health Professionals. A package, particularly for young health students or experienced health professionals new to social media, that discusses the pitfalls and risks associated with social media posting on various platforms.
  • NEW: Responding Effectively to Upset and Complaining Patients or Family. This course discusses methods to work with these individuals for best outcomes.


Online Cultural Training - for Students ONLY

Going Rural Health, in collaboration with a Yorta Yorta traditional custodian from the Shepparton region, have developed an online cultural training course for students. The course can be accessed via our website HERE.

Education - October/November 2021


Self-Care for Students

  • Wednesday November 3rd (TBC), 7.00-8.00pm via zoom.


To register for this student workshop, contact Kylie Browne kylie.browne@unimelb.edu.au or visit the booking system HERE.



Introduction to Supervision Workshop

  • Tuesday October 14th, 10am-12.30pm, via zoom. See flyer above for more details.
**NEW** Introduction to Perioperative Nursing Short Course

Introduction to Perioperative Practice - Short Course

November-December 2021. More spaces now available! See image above for details.


To register for any of these staff workshops or courses, visit the booking system HERE.

Cultural Competency in Aboriginal Health Training

Ballarat (virtual): Workshop in two parts: Thursday 11th & Thursday 18th November, 9.15am-12.15pm both days. Students and staff welcome. See flyer HERE for more details. Bookings via Eventbrite HERE.

Shepparton: NOTE:WORKSHOP FOR STUDENTS ONLY. Thursday 14th October, location TBA, as COVID restrictions wlll impact the availability of face to face workshops.  Bookings essential via the link HERE.


Please contact the education team via the Going Rural Health email address: going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au  for details of all education, if any issues with bookings, or to book a virtual session from the education list at Education topics.

New Interdisciplinary Graduate Education & Learning (NiGEL) Series

Going Rural Health have introduced a new FREE education series for graduates and early career health professionals in 2021. This series will support new graduates and early career professionals to develop their transferable skills and non-discipline-specific knowledge in health care. 

After discussions with multiple health service staff, these sessions will be pre-recorded and accessible soon via the Going Rural Health Learning Centre, on the Going Rural Health website. A discussion board will be made available to participants to simulate the conversations which would normally occur in a live event, which will also be monitored by Going Rural Health staff.

For more information please contact:

Trish Thorpe trish.thorpe@unimelb.edu.au


6th Annual Ngar-wu Wanyarra Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Conference

The Department of Rural Health invites you to attend the 2021 Ngar-wu Wanyarra Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Health Conference.  This year our conference will be held online, commencing at 9:30am on Wednesday 13th October, 2021.  The conference will begin with a keynote address from Mr Stan Grant.

The conference program has been finalised and is available at the following link: http://go.unimelb.edu.au/2fvi or via PDF HERE.

Registrations have now closed. 


If you have any further enquiries please do not hesitate to contact me or Ms Di Doyle (Events Coordinator) on 5823 4512 or at aboriginal-health@unimelb.edu.au.

We are pleased to invite you to join us for the release of the 2021 Dungala Kaiela Oration on Wednesday 29 September from 6.00pm.  

The Dungala Kaiela Oration is co-hosted by the Kaiela Institute and the University of Melbourne. Now in its 13th year, this major annual event challenges and inspires the Goulburn Murray region to create a shared cultural identity, building an inclusive vision for the peoples of the greater Goulburn Murray region. The Orations talk to the power of opportunity and collaboration. They shine a light on the ’Nanyak’, the invincible spirit of the Yorta Yorta and other First Nations people in promoting a path for prosperity and productivity within an inclusive respectful society.   

We are honoured to have the Chair of the Australian Sports Commission, Josephine Sukkar AM, deliver the 2021 Dungala Kaiela Oration. 

Josephine is also co-founder and principal of construction company Buildcorp, and president of Australian Women’s Rugby.   

Her oration will talk to the undeniable power within the infrastructure of sport in Australia to harness and channel the passion of the Australian people. She will highlight the willingness and ability within sporting infrastructure to tackle the insidious issue of institutional racism and to be a critical cornerstone in creating a healthy, vibrant nation to which we can all be proud to contribute. And one in which we can all be winners. 

Now, more than ever is a time to acknowledge that systemic institutional racism exists and that a national strategic approach is required within peak sporting codes to adopt unifying standards across all forms and codes of sport to tackle the problem. 

We very much hope you can join us for this important conversation. 

Released online 
6:00pm, Wednesday 29 September 2021 

Register HERE.

University of Melbourne Nursing Courses

Dear Nursing Educators,

Applications are now open for the University of Melbourne’s specialty nursing Graduate Certificate programs.

Please nominate the nurses from your hospital that will be enrolling into the 2022 Summer intake to complete one of the nursing specialty Graduate Certificate courses listed below:

  • Graduate Certificate in Critical Care Nursing (Emergency)
  • Graduate Certificate in Critical Care Nursing (Intensive Care)
  • Graduate Certificate in Critical Care Nursing (Integrated Critical Care)
  • Graduate Certificate in Cancer Nursing 
  • Graduate Certificate in Neonatal Intensive Care
  • Graduate Certificate in Nursing Practice (Paediatrics)
  • Graduate Certificate in Nursing Practice (Paediatric Intensive Care)

The nomination form is HERE for your completion. Please email the completed form to Nursing-Programs@unimelb.edu.au by 1 November 2021.

Once you send back the nomination form, the nominees will be emailed instructions on how to apply. The instructions will include the Student Support contact details should the nominee need further assistance with their application.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to let us know.

Kind regards,

Nursing Project team

External Education & Resources

Free Student Resource From CRANA plus:

Adapting Self-Care Practices During Clinical Placement

The resource is for any student preparing for a placement in a rural or remote setting. To access the resource, visit the webpage HERE. 


Allied Health Clinical Educators Network Clinical Supervision Modules

The Allied Health Clinical Educators’ Network (AHCEN), has released some modules on training staff in clinical supervision. They include:

  • Setting up a clinical supervision relationship
  • Providing effective feedback
  • Developing Clinical Reasoning through Supervision
  • Supporting Wellbeing through Clinical Supervision

For more details see the document HERE.


Allied Health Paediatric Videoconference Series 2021

OCTOBER: Tuesday 12th October 2021, 1-2pm.

Topic: Oral peripheral examinations for Speech Pathologists. Presented by Sarah James - Speech Pathologist, Speech Pathology Department.

Book via the link HERE.


NOVEMBER: Monday 8th November 2021, 1-2pm.

Topic: Caring for Conversions - How the care factor can impact on Conversion Disorder recovery. Presented by Chiara Tewierik - Physiotherapist, Physiotherapy Department.

Book via the link HERE.


Head to Help: A Free Mental Health Service For All Victorians

This is a service available through the Primary Health Network (PHN), for Victorians of any age experiencing mental ill-health - whether they have a GP mental health plan or not. The service is FREE, and no appointments are required.

Phone: 1800 595 212 8.30am - 5pm Monday to Friday (except public holidays).

For more details see the website HERE.

NOTE: This is NOT a crisis service.

For urgent support call Lifeline on 13 11 14

Out of hours and weekends call Beyond Blue on 1800 512 348.


Yarning SafeNStrong - A New Counselling Service for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Peoples

The Victorian Aboriginal Health Service has established Yarning SafeNStrong: a free and confidential counselling service for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Peoples. The service is available 24 hours, 7 days a week to people and families who need to have a yarn with someone about their wellbeing.

Phone: 1800 959 563

For more information see the website HERE.


Three Rivers UDRH

Three Rivers UDRH supports health professionals, staff and students by offering free online courses. The following two courses are especially relevant:

Three Rivers UDRH Rural Clinical Placements – How to grow your own course .

Three Rivers UDRH Telehealth - Embracing Technology in Healthcare


Student telehealth placements resource

There is a great resource available from SARRAH about student telehealth placements. It is a copy of the presentation from a recent webinar. Access it via the link below:

SARRAH webinar student TH placements Robyn Gill


PHN resources

WestVic PHN and Murray PHN also have education available in regional and rural areas. See their websites for details of what is on in your region:

WestVic PHN: https://westvicphn.com.au/events-education/upcoming-events/

Murray PHN: https://www.murrayphn.org.au/events/

Going Rural Health & UDRH Research

The Going Rural Health program sits within the University Department of Rural Health (UDRH) of The University of Melbourne. The UDRH undertakes a number of research projects, some of which relate to student placements - from both the student perspective, and of those who support students (supervisors and placement support staff).


Student Placement Survey

As previously mentioned, Going Rural Health are trying to ensure that students get the best placement experience possible. Please help us to do this by directing students to complete our Student Placement Survey. It is a short online survey that should only take students 10-15 minutes to complete.


Supervisor & Placement Support Staff Survey

Going Rural Health are undertaking a research project to gain a better understanding of rural clinical placements, from the perspective of those who support students (supervisors and placement support staff). Many of you will have already received an email from one of the Going Rural Health team members to invite you to participate, and to encourage you to share the invite with your colleagues. Visit the Going Rural Health webpage HERE for more details.


If you would like any further information on any of these projects, please contact the Going Rural Health team at going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au .

Going Rural Health Website


All our resources for students and staff/supervisors can still be found in the student or staff menus. Please feel free to contact us at going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au if you have any items to add or queries regarding content.

The website has a new videos page, that contains all videos relevant to student rural placements. Find the new page HERE.

Contact Details

Newsletter: To subscribe or change your subscription, please click here.

If you would like to contribute to Going Rural Health news please email your contribution to trish.thorpe@unimelb.edu.au

Phone: (03) 8344 6791

Email: going-ruralhealth@unimelb.edu.au

Website: www.goingruralhealth.com.au 

Blog: https://goingruralhealth.com.au/going-rural-health-blog/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GoingRuralHealth/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GoingRuralHlth

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The University of Melbourne Department of Rural Health acknowledges the financial support provided by the Australian Government, through the Rural Health Multidisciplinary Training program, for the Going Rural Health program.
We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which our campuses are located, pay respect to Elders past, present and emerging, and extend that respect to all Indigenous Australians.
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