LOCAL students will soon be studying medicine on the Sunshine Coast following an historic Federal Government commitment.
The Federal Government has confirmed it will fully fund 50 medical student placements at the Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
It means local highschool graduates like Margot Hulse and Jack Brownlee, from St Andrew’s Anglican College, Peregian Springs, could be among the first enrolments when the SCUH medical school opens in 2019.
Member for Fairfax Ted O’Brien, who campaigned long and hard with Fisher MP Andrew Wallace for the medical student placements, said families could save thousands of dollars.
“Students who stay at home with their parents while studying can save around $100,000 in living expenses over the course of their degree,” said Mr O’Brien.
“We also know that graduating doctors are more likely to live and work in the region where they studied which means more doctors for the Sunshine Coast, hinterland and surrounds.”
The St Andrew’s seniors recently met Health Minister Greg Hunt and experienced firsthand the state-of-the-art education facilities and equipment at the university hospital.
The medically minded teens toured SCUH’s simulation paediatric suite and intensive care room and marvelled at a high tech virtual anatomy table with digital cadavers.
St Andrew’s grade 12 student Margot Hulse said she was interested in studying medicine and thrilled by the prospect of staying on the Sunshine Coast.
“That would be awesome to be able to live at home with my parents and get that support system and hopefully save a bit of money,” said Margot.
The SCUH Medical School will be operated by Griffith University and for the first time enable doctors to be trained locally and hopefully work locally after graduation.
Minister Hunt said the full domestic allocation for local students was only possible through the advocacy of the Sunshine Coast’s federal members Ted O’Brien (Fairfax) and Andrew Wallace (Fisher).
“Ted and Andrew created the vision and worked with stakeholders, fought hard and relentlessly advocated the model which has been delivered in full,” Minister Hunt said.