Sixty-five medical graduates have started their rounds on hospital wards across the Illawarra and Shoalhaven as part of the state government’s $107 million internship program.
Wollongong Hospital has the fourth highest numbers of interns across the state (49); behind Westmead (70) and Nepean (56) and Newcastle (53).
The district’s graduates – who are spread across Wollongong, Shellharbour, Port Kembla, Bulli and Shoalhaven hospitals – will spend two years on the job, rotating through several departments.
Dr Raghu Murthy, Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District’s director of medical workforce, said in the past decade the number of interns had risen rapidly.
“These interns are a very important part of our medical staff, we welcome them and hope they have a good experience with us,” he said.
“Around half of them come from the University of Wollongong, which we have a very strong and developing collaborative relationship with.
“The goal for the district is to have a strong medical workforce, so we hope that a number of interns remain in the district long term – and many do indeed stay and train in the speciality of their choice.”
Dr Murthy said patients would also benefit from the internship program. “It can only be of benefit to the community in having people with that level of knowledge and enthusiasm starting their careers here.”
The district’s interns are among a record 999 medical graduates starting internships at NSW hospitals in 2018 – more intern positions that any other state or territory according to NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
“The NSW Government is committed to supporting medical graduates during these critical early years of training, both in metropolitan and rural areas, which set the foundation for their careers as doctors,” she said.
- Wollongong – 49
- Shoalhaven – 8
- Shellharbour – 3
- Bulli – 4
- Port Kembla – 1