A Murray Darling medical school? Don’t bet your barnaby

Rural health minister and deputy Nationals leader Bridget McKenzie was probably thinking of other issues when she met Australian Medical Association president Michael Gannon this week. Like Australian snowboarding, Senator McKenzie is also sports minister, or perhaps how her leader is feeling.

But Dr Gannon did not miss the opportunity to tweet the AMA position on how to “strengthen the rural medical workforce.” Apparently ways to do it include, “improving medical student selection process,” “resourcing regional training hubs” and the like. But what it definitely does not mean is a new medical school – gosh, do you think he meant the proposed Murray Darling school, which La Trobe and Charles Sturt U argue will alleviate the shortage of doctors in the bush.

You can bet your sweet barnaby he did.  And do you think Senator McKenzie agrees? Your barnaby is safe on that as well. Yes, retweets are not supposed to be endorsements but a professional like Minister McKenzie never tweets anything she does not mean.And she retweeted Dr Gannon’s text.

Over the last couple of weeks Senator McKenzie has been talking about expanding training places for medical graduates from the existing schools, in towns like Wagga, which the MDMS would serve. It looks rather like a point being made.


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