News at Medicine - April 2014 - International guidebook on rural medical education launched

International guidebook on rural medical education launched
April 9, 2014
An electronic textbook on rural medical education that’s been six years in the making was launched this week by the World Organization of Family doctors (WONCA) during the 12th World Rural Health Conference in Gramado, Brazil.
“This is a truly historic global step forward for rural medicine and one in which Memorial’s Faculty of Medicine has played a key role,” said Dr. James Rourke, dean of medicine.

Dr. Rourke has been deeply involved in developing the Rural Medical Education Guidebook from the initial idea through all the steps and work along the six-year journey. He is one of five editors of the guidebook; he noted that the Faculty of Medicine has contributed organizational and financial support that has made this project possible.

“I am proud that Memorial’s Faculty of Medicine has played such a major role in the development of the WONCA Rural Medical Education Guidebook,” said Dr. Rourke. “This electronic book, now available on-line, will be an important resource for the education of doctors for rural communities around the world.”

The guidebook is divided into five themes: Framing and Resourcing of Rural Medical Education and Practice; Medical Education in Rural Settings; Professional and Technical Support for Rural Medical Educators, Undergraduate Medical Education, and Postgraduate Medical Education. In total the guidebook contains 71 chapters by 74 international experts.

Dr. James Rourke is one of four authors who wrote the overview chapter What Brings us Together:  The Values and Principles of Rural medical education.” He and Dr. Leslie Rourke, professor of family medicine, also co-authored the article Boundaries and Balance: Managing Relationships in Rural Practice.”

Other authors affiliated with Memorial who have written  chapters in the Rural Medical Education Guidebook are Dr. Michael Jong, professor of family medicine (located at the Labrador Health Centre, Happy Valley-Goose Bay); Dr. Wendy Graham, associate professor of family medicine (located at the Dr. Charles L. LeGrow Health Centre in Port aux Basques), Dr. Conleth O'Maonaigh, associate professor (emergency medicine); and Dr. G. William N. Fitzgerald, clinical professor of surgery and surgeon-in-chief with Grenfell Regional Health Services (St. Anthony).

The Rural Medical Education Guidebook is available online for viewing.