Australian first program assessing international doctors in the bush

​Hunter New England Health, in conjunction with the University of Newcastle’s School of Medicine and Public Health, is celebrating the success of the latest four international doctors to complete the rural workplace based assessment program.

Director of the Centre for Medical Professional Development, Professor Kichu Nair AM said that the workplace based assessment program provides international graduate doctors with an alternative pathway to completing the Australian Medical Council’s (AMC) clinical exam.

“In order for international doctors to be granted full AMC certification they need to complete the clinical exam, however there is a long waiting time and low pass rate,” said Professor Nair

“This new pathway provides doctors with the option of being assessed in the workplace over six months instead of a single exam in one day.

“For the past six-months, these doctors, based in Tamworth and Armidale hospitals, have passed a rigorous assessment process. They are assessed by our own doctors and healthcare professionals.”

The second advantage of the workplace based assessment program is that these doctors are working for HNE Health while they complete the assessment process.

“It can take several years for an international medical graduate to be ready to sit the exam and it is much more challenging if they are not working as a doctor,” said Professor Nair.

“By integrating the assessments into the workplace the doctors can complete the program while still providing services to our rural communities and building their medical networks across all specialties.”

“Now the doctors have completed the program they will receive their AMC certification and can apply for their general registration from the Australian Medical Board.  HNE Health is the leader in Australia for this program. HNE has become an employer of choice for International Medical Graduates and the program has improved the recruitment and retention for HNE Health.

“Hopefully this registration will be the beginning of a long medical career in Australia and HNE Health,” said Professor Nair.

To acknowledge their achievements an afternoon tea is being held to honour the four graduate doctors Dr Walid Alhassan from UAE, Dr Mamdooh Mohammed from UAE, Dr Seyed Ehsan Mahmoodi from Iran and Dr Deepak Narayan from India and their families this Tuesday (15 April) at the Quality Hotel Powerhouse, 31 Marsh Street, Armidale between 5 and 5.30pm.

Another three international doctors will begin the 26-week course on 22 April 2014.

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