Healthcare is Australia’s largest employing industry and is projected to grow 18% by 2019.
With nearly 70,000 new jobs created in the past six years Victoria has the second largest healthcare workforce in the country.*
A third of these workers are based regionally and in an effort to help shape a sustainable rural healthcare industry Rural Workforce Agency Victoria (RWAV) has launched its Future Workforce program.
“RWAV wants to help create a skilled and capable workforce in rural healthcare,” said Dr Sue Harrison, RWAV Chair. “We want to break down the stereotypes of living and working rurally and show young people the variety of career possibilities available,” she said.
The program is aimed at attracting secondary age students into rural healthcare careers and has recruited a number of university students from a range of healthcare disciplines to act as Rural Ambassadors.
This vibrant, passionate group will visit secondary schools, career days and other events to spruik the rural healthcare career pathways while promoting the benefits of a rural lifestyle.
Over the coming weeks and months RWAV will also be sharing the Rural Ambassador’s stories online and through video.
Each ambassador has a unique story to tell – their pathway to studying, the struggles, the successes, scholarships and why they love the rural life.
Other facets of the program include online resources, supporting rural secondary students into health education courses, facilitating health training in rural communities and assisting with rural placements for university students’ intern years and GP Registrars.
“The benefits of living rurally aren’t widely known to young people. Many have not considered the career possibilities available in rural areas,” said Dr Harrison. “If you are enthusiastic and genuinely want to make a difference in the lives of others, then a career in rural healthcare is a fantastic option.”