RURAL general practitioners (GPs) are better prepared to deal with emergencies in their communities after undergoing a unique training experience in Bathurst on Saturday.
(min cost $8)
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A mobile simulated clinical training bus stopped at Bathurst Hospital to train GPs in rural emergency medicine skills, while other training stations were operating across the grounds.
The training day was fully subscribed, with GPs coming from all over the state to participate.
Katoomba's Dr Christopher Coghill couldn't understate the value of the day, saying he would happily do it ever year to keep his skills sharp.
"The practical thing has been really good and, because it's sort of role playing, for me it's much better for learning," he said.
"It's one thing reading it and watching it online, but being in a role playing situation ... it's made quite realistic enough that you feel really immersed in it."
The scenarios were repeated several times, which Dr Coghill said was helpful in improving GPs' responses.
He would recommend the training - which is a collaboration between the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners(RACGP) Rural, the NSW Government's Health Education and Training Institute (HETI) and the local primary health network - to other GPs.
"If you sent me an email to do it, I'd do it every year really happily," he said.
The training featured a range of skills stations, such as how to deal with airways and intubate, and real life scenarios like pregnancy complications and pre-hospital trauma.
RACGP Rural's national clinical lead Dr Karin Jodlowski- Tan said it is hard for rural GPs to attend training, which was why it was important to bring the hands-on sessions to them.
She was really pleased to see how many people attended.
"The turnout has been fantastic. I think we've filled up all the places and we've involved the local rural clinical school's medical students and they're having a really good time," she said.
On top of having GPs there to learn, there were also paramedics and nurses who voluntarily gave up their Saturdays to assist with the simulations.
Tod Adams, the senior program manager for HETI's centre of rural simulation, said it added a sense of realism to the scenarios and she was happy with how the GPs handled themselves during the training.
"I'm working in the chest pain scenario in a bathroom. I've got to say, we've not had one catastrophic anything. In all honesty, it's all gone really well. Everyone's done all of the right things, the patient survives," she said.
HETI has other emergency masterclasses coming up in regional NSW and GPs are encouraged to sign up.
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