THIS month the Bega Valley Medical Practice has welcomed five new doctors.
The new doctors come with a varied background of experiences and qualifications, and several already have a past association with the Bega Valley.
Bega Valley Medical Practice is delighted to welcome back Dr Catherine Phoon.
Dr Phoon began her medical training at the Bega Valley Medical Practice in 2008 and has now completed her GP fellowship exams.
“For the last four years I have been working at a medical practice in Sydney,” she said.
“Relocating my family to the Bega Valley has been wonderful.
“The pace of life here is so different to living in Sydney and we are looking forward to settling in and enjoying this beautiful part of the country,” Dr Phoon said.
Dr Freya Ashman, Dr Jasmine Ventura and Dr Kasia Drzewiecki are all GP registrars who have chosen to complete their specialty training in general practice.
Dr Ashman was working at Bega Valley Medical Practice in 2013 completing a rotation as part of her training with the Canberra Hospital.
“I enjoyed my time in the Bega Valley when I was here last year and I didn’t hesitate to grab the opportunity to relocate here for 12 months while undergoing my training as a GP registrar,” Dr Ashman said.
Dr Ventura has also made the decision to relocate to her hometown in the Bega Valley to undertake her GP training requirements.
Dr Ventura grew up in Brogo and attended Bega Primary and Bega High School before studying and working in Japan, Melbourne, Italy, Sydney and the North Coast of NSW.
Dr Drzewiecki has been completing her GP training at the Sapphire Clinic in Merimbula and will be sharing her time between the Merimbula practice and the Bega practice as she completes the next six months of her training.
Dr Elizabeth Tham is a junior doctor who has also joined the Bega Valley Medical Practice as part of a three-month rotation from the Canberra Hospital.
Practice manager Jodie Meaker said it has been a very busy time.
“We are delighted to welcome so many experienced practitioners to the practice and to have some of the ‘old faces’ come back is wonderful,” she said.
An increase in doctors also means an increase in inquiries and bookings.
To assist with this increased demand the Bega Valley Medical Practice launched a website, www.bvmp.com.au, late last year, allowing existing patients to book an appointment online.
“Sometimes our patients may need to book an appointment while the practice is closed,” Ms Meaker said.
“This booking facility can be accessed from the BVMP website or patients can download an app onto their iPhone or Android device so they can book an appointment from anywhere they are, at any time of the day.”
MEMBER for Bega Andrew Constance has welcomed the announcement that 40 new nurses and midwives will be starting work within the Southern NSW Local Health District (SNSWLHD) this year.
“[Of those] 13 new nurses and midwives will be joining our local wards this year and will be rotated through Bega, Pambula and the Eurobodalla.
“These fresh faces have come from near and far to train and work in our local hospitals and I join the community in welcoming them to our area.”
Mr Constance said 34 per cent of the state’s new nurses are being recruited to rural and regional hospitals.
“The new nurses and midwives joining the SNSWLHD this year will be learning from the best and I wish them well.
“I’m incredibly lucky to have had the opportunity to meet nurses, midwives and hospital staff and I’m always impressed by their commitment to care.”
Health Minister Jillian Skinner said more than 1800 graduate nurses and midwives will begin their careers this year in 123 hospitals across NSW.