2020 NRHSN Executive Committee

The 2020 NRHSN Executive Committee:

  • Chair – Harry Jude
  • Vice Chair – Krishn Parmar
  • Secretary – Elodie Honore
  • Allied Health Officer – Kate Thompson
  • Community and Advocacy Officer – Jocelyn Ledger
  • Indigenous Health Officer – Rachel Pugh
  • Medical Officer – Danica Xie
  • Nursing and Midwifery Officer – Fiona Fletcher

The Executive can be contacted via: executivecommittee@nrhsn.org.au

Chair – Harry Jude

  • ROUNDS Rural Health Club
  • Medical Student
  • University of Notre Dame

Harry grew up in Wagga Wagga in country NSW. He is currently a medical student studying at the University of Notre Dame in Sydney where he served as Co-Chair of his rural health club. Prior to this he was a Registered Nurse and worked for a year in Sydney. His passion for rural health isn’t limited to Australia, having volunteered in rural areas like Ukunda in Kenya, and Tetere in the Solomon Islands, where he helped manage a small hospital, delivering babies and running vaccination programs. He is looking forward to moving back to his hometown of Wagga to complete his medical studies.

You can reach Harry at chair@nrhsn.org.au

Vice Chair – Krishn Parmar

  • SPINRPHEX Rural Health Club
  • Dentistry student
  • University of Western Australia

Having been born and brought up in Brisbane, Krishn has travelled around Queensland to many regional hubs and small towns. This sparked his passion to promote and advocate for rural health. As Allied Health Officer, he aims to promote the benefits of working rural and wants to increase the opportunity and accessibility for future health professionals. Krishn was the Pharmacy Representative at TROHPIQ and is continuing his work there as the IT and Communications Executive Officer in 2019. He also looks forward to working with our stakeholders to grow the allied health sector in the NRHSN.

“The Vice Chair is a flexible position within the core executive, alongside the Chair and Secretary. The responsibilities of the role vary based upon the needs of the committee so it provides a unique experience with an opportunity to be involved with all aspects of the NRHSN. In the past, this position has been involved in: helping establish new rural health clubs, attending various meetings and conferences including members of parliament, liaising with stakeholders, dealing with internal affairs, and developing projects. Along with duties expected of an NRHSN executive member, this position is a great opportunity to develop experiences in leadership through guiding the rest of the committee and greater NRHSN network.”

You can reach Krishn at vicechair@nrhsn.org.au

Secretary – Elodie Honore

  • ROUNDS Rural Health Club
  • Medical student
  • University of Notre Dame, Sydney

Elodie grew up travelling between her family’s large farming community of South Gippsland, Victoria and Melbourne, allowing her benefits of both worlds of rural and metropolitan Australia. While loving the open Australian landscapes, hard work of the cattle yards and the freshest food from the farms, she also saw the inequities experienced there. In contrast to the resources, conveniences and services available to metropolitan Melbourne, she saw that rural Australia has a long way to go, igniting her commitment to rural health. Elodie has been Co-Chair of ROUNDS Rural Health Club, lead various other student societies and worked with refugee and community groups teaching vital water safety around the unique Australian waterways. Elodie will be enjoying her final year of medical school in Ballarat, Victoria.

“NRHSN Secretary is not just an administrative role. While organising meetings, writing minutes and attending to emails is an important part of the role, you really make your mark through NRHSN website management, newsletter creation and working on position papers. Regular national stakeholder engagement and support for Rural Health Clubs around Australia becomes your norm, benefiting our members and Rural Australia along with your own professional development. And yes, you do get used to all the acronyms…eventually.”

You can reach Elodie at secretary@nrhsn.org.au

Allied Health Officer – Kate Thompson

  • TROHPIQ Rural Health Club
  • Pharmacy Student
  • University of Queensland

Kate grew up in regional NSW and is currently completing her fourth year of a Bachelor of Pharmacy (Honours) in Brisbane. Kate is passionate about rural health and helping to contribute to the future regional and remote workforce of Australia. Kate strives to ensure all future Australians have access to healthcare no matter their location. During 2019, Kate worked as apart of the allied health management committee of TROHPIQ and is very excited to take on the role of Allied Health Co-Chair with TROHPIQ and Allied Health Officer within the NRHSN in 2020. Kate feels extremely privileged to have the opportunity to advocate for the views of allied health students and help to ensure a promising career pathways for our future rural workforce.

“As Allied Health Officer you will have the opportunity of networking with some of the major rural allied health bodies within Australia as an advocate to facilitate opportunities for our student network. Leading your designated rural health clubs will build on your interprofessional and teamwork skills and offer unique insight into how our different clubs operate. One of the most rewarding aspects of allied health officer is helping to strengthen not only your own future professional network but working with other like minded individuals to increase the engagement of our national cohort and promote working rurally.”

You can reach Kate at allied@nrhsn.org.au

Community and Advocacy Officer – Jocelyn Ledger

  • BREAATHHE Rural Health Club
  • Medical student
  • University of Newcastle
Jocelyn grew up in Lithgow, NSW and spent time living in Albury, NSW while completing her Bachelor of Business. Jocelyn is now a 4th year medical student at the University of Newcastle and completing her clinical years at Maitland Hospital. She has been the President and General Councillor for Medicine in her rural health club, BREAATHHE, and is a current NSW RDN Cadet. Jocelyn is passionate about rural health, advocating for students wanting to experience and learn in rural settings. She is looking forward to working with students and stakeholders in 2020.

“The Community and Advocacy Officer is an exciting role that is responsible for our social media channels and building the community spirit of the NRHSN. It is a unique position that involves working with national stakeholders, rural health clubs, health professionals, and students. The scope of the role is unlimited allowing you to follow your passions in rural health. A highlight for me this year was co-creating and moderating the Rural Health Supper Series, a webinar series focusing on different aspects of health in rural communities.”

You can reach Jocelyn at advocacy@nrhsn.org.au

Indigenous Health Officer – Rachel Pugh

  • HOPE4HEALTH Rural Health Club
  • Medical student
  • Griffith University
Rachel is a Woppaburra woman, born in Mt Isa in which she spent her formative years. Growing up between Brisbane and Mt Isa she developed a deep appreciation for the culture of rural communities whilst also becoming aware of the vast differences in health outcomes.She has been heavily involved in her rural health club Hope4Health as Indigenous advocacy executive, and VP for rural and indigenous portfolios in 2020, and had the fortunate opportunity to be involved in numerous rural immersion and rural placement programs throughout Australia. As a final year medical student at Griffith University Rachel looks forward to advocating for and supporting students in building a health workforce that rural Australian people deserve.

“The Indigenous Health Officer is an exciting and dynamic role that works with students, organisations and health professionals with different experiences with and views of indigenous health. This role has vast scope to advocate for policy change to improve experiences, support health students and improve Indigenous Australian health. A highlight for me has been working with the inspiring NRHSN team and industry experts learning about how best to empower indigenous students to become leaders and how rural health clubs can best support them in their communities.”

You can reach Rachel at indigenous@nrhsn.org.au

Medical Officer – Danica Xie

  • RAHMS Rural Health Club
  • Medical student
  • University of New South Wales
Having grown up in the New England and Northern Tablelands regions of NSW and spent the other half of her life in Sydney, Danica is passionate about rural life and medicine. She is currently a medical student at the Port Macquarie rural campus of the University of New South Wales and intends to practise in a district of workforce shortage where she can also train the next generation of rural doctors. In the past four years, she has been a dedicated member of UNSW’s rural health club, the Rural Allied Health and Medical Society (RAHMS) and is this year’s outgoing President. She has also served as RAHMS’ Clinical Skills Director, RAHMS’ Publicity Officer, the Social Media Officer for the Australian Medical Students Journal, and is passionate about the opportunity to take national rural advocacy to a new height.

“This year as the NRHSN Medical Officer has offered invaluable opportunities to network with groups such as the RACGP, AMSA and the GPSN, engage in research opportunities, and present publications at NRHSN Council 1 2020. The highlight of this year was the chance to be the Student Representative on the RACGP Rural Council, which is the faculty’s key advisory body for issues affecting rural and remote communities. It was a wonderful to be a valued opinion at the RACGP Rural Council Face-to-Face meeting in Alice Springs, and also to meet people who were incredibly passionate about rural health.”

You can reach Danica at medical@nrhsn.org.au

Nursing and Midwifery Officer – Fiona Fletcher

  • MIRAGE Rural Health Club
  • Nursing Student
  • University of Sydney

Fiona grew up on a cattle station in remote central Queensland where she developed an innate appreciation for rural community culture which ignited her passion of rural and remote health. Fiona is now based in Sydney, studying her Bachelor of Nursing at the University of Sydney where she hopes to spark interest of rural health in other students who haven’t yet considered rural experiences. She is an active member of her rural health club, having just completed her role as Social Representative and newly elected as Treasurer for 2019. She has recently collaborated in projects with the NSW Rural Doctors Network, participated in Rural Nursing Trips in NSW and has completed rural placements in Broken Hill and Bathurst. Fiona is excited to have the opportunity to represent health students on a national platform and to continue collaborating within a supportive network of passionate and influential advocates.

“These past two years have been an incredible professional and personal journey and eye-opening experience since I was elected as Nursing and Midwifery Officer 2019-2020. I have had the absolute privilege to work collaboratively within a supportive network of passionate and influential advocates. It has been an honor to represent nursing and midwifery students on a national platform, assist in the publishing of The Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Student Engagement Guide and The Rural Midwifery papers, attend Stakeholder conferences across Australia and witness the response of all industry members during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

You can reach Fiona at nursing@nrhsn.org.au