Candidate: Pheobe Devereaux
Rural Health Club: SHARP
Please provide summary of why you are interested in the position, your ability to fulfill the position and your previous experience related to the position. (Word limit: 300 words)
I have been involved in my university’s RHC since the beginning of my medical school career through attending events, seminars and sitting on the committee. I am currently RHSV coordinator for the RHC which I have thoroughly enjoyed and would love the opportunity to give back on a national scale. These high school visits are the backbone of many of the RHC’s events, therefore I believe that this experience will be valuable in the Social Media Officer’ position. The ‘ Social Media Officer’ role would allow me to assist in spreading the word about rural health to students that haven’t considered it before. I am looking forward to the opportunity to share what all the RHC are up to. Each RHC has a range of unique events and sharing these can assist us to continue to inspire students to pursue rural health. As a RHSV coordinator, I would love to see more examples on social media, of how other RHCs have run their visits in order to continue to improve our program. Over the past 1.5 years I have represented my university in our rural health club, the Doctors for the environment national committee (DEA), Australian Medical Student Association (AMSA) global health code green committee and our medical student society. While I have enjoyed being involved in a wide range of committees, these experiences have led me to commit to continue to explore the rural health advocacy route. I will finish all of these commitments at the end of this year, therefore I am confident that I will have enough time to dedicate to this role, should I be fortunate enough to be elected.
Please provide a response to the Key Selection Criteria. (Word limit: 1000 words)
1.Access to email, phone and internet for communication throughout the term. I have wifi and mobile internet therefore am able to communicate from anywhere.
2. Availability to travel to attend RHC, stakeholders and NRHSN events and meetings through the term. I have a car and am available to travel when needed.
3. Previous experience within the NRHSN at a national and/or RHC level I am currently the Rural high school visit coordinator and sit on the committee for the UOW RHC.
4. Interest and involvement in rural health I have been actively involved in my university’s rural health club since the beginning of medical school and am currently on the committee as the RHSV coordinator. I have worked and completed university placements in the rural towns of Bunbury (WA), Nowra (NSW) and Tamworth (NSW). One of the reasons I chose to study at the UOW was that it has a focus in rural health, which includes a 12 month rural placement in 3rd year. I spent the first 17 years of my life living in rural WA, therefore have lived experience of the health disparities between the rural and urban populations.
5. Demonstrated previous leadership in rural health. I am currently the RHSV co-ordinator for my university’s RHC. 2021 was a difficult time to hold this role in NSW, however I managed to secure a visit and motivate a group of students to attend.
6. Demonstrated previous experience in presenting at conferences, meeting with stakeholders, media interviews I am participating in UOW’s ‘Climate change and health panel’ for our sustainability week later this month. Having had multiple executive and committee positions in a variety of groups, I have been required to have meetings with a variety of stakeholders. I am comfortable meeting with stakeholders and ensuring that we are working towards the same goal. I regularly contributed to our student newsletter at St George’s College. I am a qualified sports scientist and personal trainer, and have made presentations to members about various health topics including exercise, nutrition and recovery.
7. Demonstrated understanding of the role of the executive committee within the NRHSN. The executive committee role is to support the RHCs nationwide, to achieve NHRSN aims, which are; to support and advocate for health students interested in rural health, as well as promote rural health care career options. The NRHSN exists to inspire students to follow a rural health pathway, as well as support these students to succeed in their career goals. By encouraging students to explore rural health pathways during their studies, they are more likely to return to a rural area once they are fully qualified. I have discussed the roles and responsibilities with current NRHSN executive committee members to ensure I understand their role.
8. Demonstrated previous understanding of NRHSN publications, resources and position/priority papers. It is my understanding that the NRHSN is required to publish the NRHSN e-newsletter, resources to support RHCs position papers when required. It is imperative that NRHSN’s member views are collected and taken into account for the relevant publications to ensure that the council is reflecting the needs and priorities of its members. As a RHSV coordinator I found the guide for RHSV extremely useful. The guide set out everything I was required to do, and included things that I would not have thought of otherwise (eg. permission slips for photo use). I have also read the scholarship guide and the newsletter to provide valuable information that I wouldn’t have known otherwise.
9. Demonstrated previous understanding or commitment of a multidisciplinary to rural and remote health. UOW SHARP is fortunate enough to have a range of health students including nursing, midwifery, social work and physiotherapy. Through my experience on the committee I have developed a greater understanding of the roles of various allied health members within a rural health context. This year I created a document which included various health professionals and their roles within rural health, which I distributed to the students on our RHSV. This was a fascinating exercise where I was able to have in depth conversations with various students about their career goals and placement experiences in both an urban and rural setting.
10. Demonstrated previous experience in representing a representative bodies views and not personal views I am currently a representative for the DEA, AMSA code green and the WUMSS. These positions have involved representing both my university colleagues and national bodies. This has required me to ensure that I am upholding the values of my representative bodies rather than my own. I ensured to use workshops or surveys in order to ensure that I am supporting the members’ views.
11. Demonstrated previous experience in ensuring timelines for tasks are met for yourself and for others In my time as a full time medical student I have been on several committees, worked part time and played AFL for my local club. This has required me to multitask and reassess my priorities to ensure that I am participating in all my activities to the best of my ability. I have learnt to ensure I keep a strict to-do list and timeline in order to be held accountable. I also ensure that I remain in constant communication with my colleagues and organisations to ensure that everyone’s needs are being met.
12. Demonstrated an understanding or experience in professional behaviour. I have been working for 10 years in a variety of professions and have the ability to conduct myself appropriately in a variety of environments. My experience as a medical student and a personal care assistant in a hospital has taught me what It means to be a professional in the health environment. This is a vastly different experience as you are responsible for people when they are at their most vulnerable. This has allowed me to develop the appropriate professional behaviour for a medical officer such as ensuring patient confidentiality and the ability to work in a team.
13. Demonstrated previous experience/ability to work cohesively in a team As a medical student and a patient care assistant am required to work within a team everyday. I work with other students, medical officers, nurses, midwives, ward clarks, physiotherapists, social workers etc. Through this experience I have learnt that everyone has something to add to the situation and it is just as important to listen as to speak. Representing my university in national committees such as DEA and AMSA code green have involved communicating with students, university staff and the national executives. These experiences required coordination between people from different professional backgrounds and priorities while working towards the same foal.
14. Demonstrated ability to work in close collaboration with the consortium of RWAs and/or an administrator. As a John Flynn placement program participant I was required to communicate with the RWA of Queensland. This gave me an appreciation of the fantastic work they do and I am excited to have the chance to collaborate with them in the future. In my roles at St George’s College I was required to collaborate with the administration as both a student and an employee. I therefore had to learn how to communicate in a professional capacity while representing two different capacities.
Please provide your Curriculum Vitae. This can include a summary of specific previous experiences you have had related to rural health and leadership (events, courses, positions held, relevant previous or current employment). (Word limit: 500 words)
University of Wollongong (UOW), SHARP, RHSV coordinator 2021 Organised our RHSV – Attending regular SHARP meetings Assisting with and attending rural health events
John Flynn Placement Program Participant (JFPP) 2020- present I received a rural placement in Tamworth through this program
Wollongong University Medical Student Society (WUMMS), Environmental and community officer 2020-2021 This involved promoting environmentally conscious actions within the medical school, collaboration with other organisations across campus and nationally. I also assisted with the rest of the committee when needed I also contributed to other committee responsibilities
Volunteer, Ronald McDonald house – 2018 The Ronald McDonald house provides accommodation and care to rural and remote patients and their families attending treatment at Perth hospitals I had various roles, however the overarching goal was to create a safe and welcoming place for the children and families. This involved training and interactions with those with lived experience of the sparse availability of health care in rural and remote areas
Student representative, University of Western Australia, Masters of Exercise Physiology – 2018 Represented the masters of Exercise physiology students. This involved regular check ins with students, advocating for our cohort and meetings with staff.
Patient Care Assistant, WA Country Health Service, – 2017 – 2018 Transporting patients, meeting their nutritional needs and assisting nurses with care in the emergency department and Intensive care unit This involved working with doctors, nurses, clerks and the radiology team to provide holistic health care.
St George’s College Vice President 2016 St George’s college is a residential college at UWA, which primarily provides a home away from home for rural/remote students. I represented the students and organised events which assisted in supporting the unique needs of rural students moving away from home.
Residential Advisor, St George’s College — 2015- 2016 This was a paid pastoral care role to support the students at the college
Mentor, True Blue Dreaming 2014- 2017 Mentoring primary school children from rural and disadvantaged areas
Teach Learn Grow Rural Program Coordinator- 2014 This involved training in the following areas; leadership, communication, organisation, education and rural communities. Organising the food, accomodation, schedule, activities, communicating with the school and supporting the tutors with their lessons for a program tutoring primary school students.