Murdoch students continue tradition of free treatment in the North-West WA

October 5, 2017

Hands on experience: Murdoch chiropractic students treat remote community members.

Murdoch University chiropractic students have journeyed thousands of kilometres to provide residents of remote regional Western Australian communities with free treatment.

Groups of experienced students travelled to Geraldton, Karratha, Tom Price and Paraburdoo offering free assessment and chiropractic care to a vast array of people who would not otherwise have access to affordable musculo-skeletal treatment.

Staff from Murdoch University’s School of Health Professions Professions, who closely supervised the students during their field trips, said this year’s cohort continued a long tradition of Murdoch students providing free treatment in regional WA.

“Chiropractic students are encouraged to undertake a broad range of clinical experiences prior to graduation and these placements help to reach that goal,” project coordinator Dr Chris Hodgetts said.

“We have offered chiropractic students opportunities for practical experience in Western Australia’s regional areas for 12 years and many students have reflected on these experiences as life changing.

“A key purpose of the visits is to continue the long-term relationships with local Indigenous people in delivering ongoing care, and for many students, this might also be the first time they deliver care to Indigenous people.”

The students received cultural awareness training before departure, having previously gained experience working within the University’s Chiropractic Clinic at its Perth campus.

Dr Laura Maurice, who co-led the project with Dr Hodgetts, said that the trip was only possible through the generous support of regional health providers and sponsors.

“In Geraldton, the students visited the Western Australian Centre for Rural Health’s EdSim and Geraldton Regional Aboriginal Medical Service, where they had the opportunity to learn about working with professionals in other allied health areas,” Dr Maurice said.

“The City of Karratha gave our students the opportunity to work in the Frank Butler Community Centre to treat people who may not otherwise have been able to have musculoskeletal complaints assessed and managed by a chiropractor.”

Students also travelled to Tom Price and Paraburdoo where they provided treatment at the Paraburdoo hospital, Wakathuni Community and Tom Price Doug Talbot ‘Bird Park’.

“This trip would not have been possible without the help of a huge group of sponsors including Lestock Tours, Toll IPEC, Sodexo, Fortescue Metals Group, Viento, CMB, Gumala Aboriginal Corporation IBN and the Shire of Ashburton,” Dr Maurice added.

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