Gunnedah's Barber Street Medical Centre welcomes two new GP registrars to it's staff

FRESH FACES: Nicole Bartos and Matthew Chan are excited to take the next step in their medical career in Gunnedah at the Barber Street Medical Centre. Photo: Billy Jupp
FRESH FACES: Nicole Bartos and Matthew Chan are excited to take the next step in their medical career in Gunnedah at the Barber Street Medical Centre. Photo: Billy Jupp

GUNNEDAH will benefit from two new General Practitioner (GP) registrars that will complete the next stage of their training over the next six to 12 months in town.

Doctors, Nicole Bartos and Matthew Chan will take the next step in their medical carers alongside the experienced staff at the Barber Street Medical Centre from Monday February 12.

The duo told the Namoi Valley Independent they are excited to be working in Gunnedah.

“Everyone has been really nice so far,” Dr Chan said.

“I am originally from Sydney and I think it will be great to settle into a new community.

“I really am quite excited to work within a smaller community.”

Dr Bartos said she was looking forward to bonding with her patients.

“It’s fair to say I am looking forward to getting to know some people within the community,” she said.

“You get to be a lot more hands-on when working as a rural GP in a country town.”

READY TO GO: New Gunnedah GP registrars Nicole Bartos and Matthew Chan are excited to engage with the Gunnedah community in their new roles. Photo: Billy Jupp

READY TO GO: New Gunnedah GP registrars Nicole Bartos and Matthew Chan are excited to engage with the Gunnedah community in their new roles. Photo: Billy Jupp

Dr Bartos is familiar with the region having spent the last year working at the Tamworth Base Hospital.

“I was fortunate enough to spend a year working in the Tamworth Hospital emergency department,” he said. 

“It was good to be thrown in the deep end and experience a lot of different cases and scenarios during my time there.”

Dr Chan is experienced in rural medicine, having spent some time training in an emergency department in Broken Hill.

“Working in Broken Hill was certainly very beneficial,” he said.

“You are in a very remote location and dealing with a variety of cases, as well as occasionally getting the chance to work with the Royal Flying Doctors Service, which was awesome as well.”

Barber Street Medical Centre’s Dr Robert Parsons said the practice has “often taken on registrars” in the past.

“We are pretty excited to have two young registrars that will keep us on toes,” HE said.

“They are certainly going to become immersed in a variety of changes and it is certainly a lifestyle immersion working in a rural town.”

The Gunnedah doctor said there is potential for trainee doctors to become permanent doctors in Gunnedah.

“It is worth noting that all the long-term GPs here have come as trainees,” he said.

“Even at North West Health, Ken Adams and Chris Gittoes both started out as trainees through the practice.

“I think it’s important to have trainees at the practice because that’s where their going to work and hopefully stay.”

Dr Parsons said he hoped there would be more young doctors coming to Gunnedah in the future.

“We hope to have a succession of young trainee doctors,” he said.

“We have had approaches for two further doctors to come on in 2019, both of whom intend to live in Gunnedah long-term. 

“I don’t know if things are turning but I am certainly more optimistic.”

The two new registrars at the Barber Street Medical Centre follow the arrival of Mackellar Care Rural Health Centre’s newest GP, Dr Mike Hodges who began work on February 5.

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