Taking the lead as a rural registrar

30 August 2021

Dr Judith Keith has always considered working in a rural location. After finding medicine and her passion for psychiatry later in life, Judith was attracted to the prospect of taking up a post in Whyalla, South Australia.

‘I enjoy the lifestyle of living rurally. Living in a smaller community the pace is a bit different,' she says.

Judith embraces opportunities to train with greater autonomy and responsibility, and to broaden her skill set by consulting patients with diverse presentations, networking with multidisciplinary teams in a well-supported environment, providing tutelage to medical interns, and accessing a range of available training resources.

‘You're working in a small team, so you get to know the other people that you're working with and get exposure to a wide variety of presentations. Rather than competing with many registrars, I’m the only registrar so I get more opportunities in leadership roles than I perhaps would in the city.’

Immersing herself in the welcoming and supportive community, Judith appreciates the continuity of care and the personal service with her patients. ‘I think that I have, in some ways, more time to spend face-to-face with patients, talking to them and developing that therapeutic alliance.’

As part of the Australian Government’s Specialist Training Program, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists supports a variety of exciting training opportunities in rural Australia for psychiatry registrars.

Unique training posts are available in rural settings, including:

  • public and private health facilities
  • aged care
  • community health
  • Aboriginal health services.

The Specialist Training Program (STP) offers six-month training rotations at various stages of the RANZCP Fellowship Program. 

The Integrated Rural Training Pipeline (IRTP) supports the completion of at least two thirds of RANZCP Fellowship in a rural environment.

More about the STP