Rural and remote communities struggle to maintain a stable medical workforce; this results in staccato health services, unmet health care needs and a revolving door of temporary health care providers. A number of prominent educationalists have argued that the key to recruitment for rural and remote communities is to select students from rural backgrounds and train them in those locations either with repeated exposures or prolonged attachments (LIC). Medical educators now struggle with the challenge of creating stable health care services in these areas. To do so, it is imperative that we have a deep understanding of how we can maintain and sustain clinicians' involvement in rural and remote communities as a lifetime career option. Memorial University in partnership with Nunavut Territorial Health Services has committed to a long term educational partnership in several rural and remote communities in eastern and far northern Canada. The Project for Enhanced Rural and Remote Training (PERRT)/NunaFam project has early significant results that show promise in recruitment and retention of physicians. Building on the 'lessons learned' and the evolving outcomes of this medical education partnership this workshop will explore the dynamics of how an 'educational focus' can be a key strategy to the creation, growth and sustainability of rural and remote communities of practice.
This abstract was presented at the Innovative Solutions in Remote Healthcare - 'Rethinking Remote' conference, 23-24 May 2016, Inverness, Scotland.