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Introducing… DR. GARRY NIXON: Rural Hospital Generalist at Dustan Hospital.

Dr. Nixon’s says a day in his life is never the same. He splits his time 50/50 between clinical and university work. He does rounds with registrars just like in any larger hospital. He sees a reasonable amount of trauma but what he finds most rewarding is the complicated internal medicine, mostly with older patients. Dr. Nixon also lectures, performs research, is Director of the Rural Postgraduate Program – a diploma for rural hospital medical training – and co-convenor of the Postgraduate Certificate Clinician Performed Ultrasound.

Dr. Nixon says the biggest misconception around working rurally is that it’s a dead end lacking opportunities. Career progression and specialisation is definitely possible rurally – look at him with his uni work! Working rurally is also a good opportunity for those who want to work across both GP and hospital settings. There’s a real variety in patient presentation and a whole range of sub-specialists in the city would look after most patients he sees. So he gets to be every specialty in one day!

There are also a whole heap of things at your back door that you don’t get in town – he goes mountain biking in his lunch hour! (the other pic is him doing the Godzone race with rural Registrars). But the best and most unappreciated opportunity is the ability to be part of the community. He says this isn’t immediately obvious but it grows over time, in a way he’s certain you don’t get in the city.

Dr. Nixon, you’re a true Human of Rural Health.