Two ways to make a med school

One is being a regional uni, the other is patience

The feds are making a big deal indeed about students commencing in the new Murray Darling Medical School network, involving six unis teaching at five regional centres (when fully functioning next year) in NSW and Victoria.

It isn’t quite what La Trobe and Charles Sturt unis had in mind when they were lobbying for a MDMS to call their own back in 2013 (CMM August 9 2013) – but at least both are partners in their project.

But unis without a medical school wanting one is a political perennial and CQU is continuing the push then VC Scott Bowman started (CMM March 9 2018).  It’s getting towards the shove over the line stage, with students starting a CQU pre-med bachelor degree next year, before moving to a Uni Queensland MD taught in CQU’s heartland (CMM November 13).

And now CQU is looking further north, with the Cairns Post favourably reporting its interest in teaching courses, including health, in Innisfail. It already teaches nursing and paramedic science up the road in Cairns.

James Cook U already has a medical school in the region, but the MDMS demonstrates that over-time it is hard to stop an institution pitching more health services for a region and harder for governments to stay no.