Curtin University has appointed an internationally recognised rural health expert to the role of inaugural Director of the new Goldfields University Department of Rural Health (UDRH) at Curtin’s Kalgoorlie Campus.
Professor Fiona Doolan-Noble, from the Department of General Practice and Rural Health at the University of Otago, brings extensive expertise in rural health and interprofessional education, proven experience in the clinical management of dispersed teams and a strong background in nursing as well as a PhD in medicine, which focused on primary health care.
The Goldfields UDRH’s Business Manager has also been appointed. Chelsie Grace will take up the role, after having worked as the Director of Regional Development for the Goldfields-Esperance Development Commission and the Director of the Kalgoorlie campus at Central Regional TAFE.
Announced by the Federal Government last year, the Goldfields UDRH is operated by Curtin University in partnership with the Western Australian Country Health Service and the Royal Flying Doctor Service (Western Operations). Funding for the Goldfields UDRH is provided by the Department of Health and Aged Care under the Rural Health Multidisciplinary Training (RHMT) Program.
Curtin University Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne said she was delighted to announce the two senior appointments to the Kalgoorlie-based UDRH.
“The new Goldfields UDRH will play a critical role in improving health outcomes for rural and regional communities by boosting the health workforce of the future and offering nursing and allied health students a taste of working in regional communities,” Professor Hayne said.
“Fiona’s research centres on the health and wellbeing of rural communities with a focus on workforce development, so we are thrilled to welcome someone of her calibre to lead and manage the Goldfields UDRH in the inaugural Director role.
“Chelsie’s strong relationships within the Goldfields community and proven senior local experience make her an ideal candidate for taking on the Business Manager role, which is responsible for managing the operational and administration functions of the department.”
Both Professor Doolan-Noble and Ms Grace will start on August 7. They will be based at Curtin’s Kalgoorlie Campus.
Expressions of interest are now open for final semester undergraduate nursing students to undertake their placements at the Goldfields UDRH this semester.
Expressions of interest for nursing and allied health students for 2024 will open later this year.
The UDRH will build on the success of Curtin’s Kalgoorlie Rural Health Campus and the University’s partnerships with the Western Australian Country Health Service and the Royal Flying Doctor Service (Western Operations) to collaborate with the community and industry to improve the wellbeing and health of regional areas.