Year 5D Indigenous health rotation

Rotations 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Mallee District Aboriginal Services and Mildura Base Hospital
Clinical Supervisor:

Dr. Aseel Marioud, GP.

MDAS is a vibrant and innovative organization employing over 300 staff. MDAS runs over 50 programs aimed at improving the health outcomes and life expectancy of Indigenous people in the Mildura, Swan Hill and Kerang areas. Staff at all includes general practitioners, Aboriginal health workers and nurses, obstetrician and gynaecologist, midwives, maternal health workers, mental health workers, and drug and alcohol counsellors. Generally, students will be under the supervision of the general practitioner and will be encouraged to assess and examine patients in the GP clinic, but placement opportunities in other areas of the service will be encouraged and negotiated, including:

  • nurse clinic
  • visiting specialists clinics (renal, endocrinology)
  • chronic disease management
  • Aboriginal maternity service
  • maternal child health checks
  • psychological counselling and mental health
  • drug and alcohol counselling
  • quit smoking support
  • visit to Wiimpatja Healing Centre (remote)

You will also be rostered for several days to the Aboriginal Liaison Service at Mildura Base Hospital, familiarising yourself with the services and issues surrounding treatment in the acute setting.

What our students say about Indigenous health

I completed my elective placement in Mildura at Mallee District Aboriginal Service (MDAS). Over the 6 weeks I spent there, I had a broad range of placement opportunities, including spending time with Aboriginal health workers in clinic and at schools, following the Aboriginal Liaison officers at the hospital, experiencing the Koori court system and spending time at the women’s refuge accommodation. I was also fortunate enough to visit Warrakoo, a rehab and parole facility, situated 150km from Mildura, which aims to reconnect indigenous males back to country. Although largely non-clinical in nature, each of these experiences were eye opening, and gave context to many of the patients who I saw in GP consults.

MDAS is a huge asset to the community. Those working there are committed to achieving the best outcomes for their patients and I felt very fortunate to be a part of this community during my rotation. I was also encouraged to be involved in a wide variety of activities and placements. Thanks to the time I spent at MDAS, I feel that I have more of an understanding of the issues around Indigenous health and feel better equip for future practice in this area. It was such a unique opportunity and I would recommend it to anyone who has an interest in rural or Indigenous health.

Lana Sturm 2019