This Rural Wonca resource website has been established to assist rural doctors, nurses and other health professionals , administrators and policy makers find the information they need on pressing questions with respect to rural health. It helps pull together much of the grey literature on these topics as well as links to peer reviewed journals. Anyone with exemplars or innovative solutions to rural issues is welcome to send these to the contact addresses and, as long as suitable, they will verified and posted.
Rural Wonca is the Working Party on Rural Practice of WONCA (World Organization of National Colleges, Academies and Academic Associations of General Practitioners/Family Physicians). Rural Wonca has worked closely with WHO since 2018 to review the evidence for Rural Health Workforce Recruitment and Retention. The resources on these website as designed to take this a step further by providing a toolkit of ideas and resources.
The webpage is searchable for all topics but specifically initially for
- Rural Health Workforce
The Team Behind Rural Wonca Resources
Dr Alan Bruce Chater
M.B.,B.S. Hons (Qld), FACRRM, DRANZCOG (Advanced) FRACGP OAM
Assoc Professor Alan Bruce Chater is from Queensland, Australia where he is Medical Superintendent with Right to Private Practice in the rural town of Theodore.
He is Chair of Rural Wonca (World Organization of General Practitioners Working Party on Rural Practice), Mayne Associate Professor and Head of the Discipline of Rural and Remote Medicine at University of Queensland, and on the Australian Independent Hospital Pricing Authority Board. He was the founding convenor of the Rural Doctors Associations of Queensland and Australia and the founding Chair of the Australian National Rural Health Alliance and inaugural Chair of the Statewide Rural and Remote Clinical Network Queensland Health.
He remains grounded in the needs of rural communities as he performs these roles while providing comprehensive rural generalist hospital practice and general practice in Theodore. He has been awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for his service to Rural Medicine and his rural community.
Dr John Wynn-Jones
BSc, MBBS, FRCGP, DCH, DRCOG
Dr John Wynn-Jones has been a rural GP in Wales for over 30 years. He has now retired from his clinical practice but maintains his academic roles. He founded the UK Institute of Rural Health and the Welsh Rural Postgraduate Unit in 1997 and was instrumental in creating the European Rural and Isolated Practitioner’s Association (EURIPA) and remained its president until 2012. John was one of the founding members of the Wonca Working Party on Rural Practice and took over as chair from 2013 to 2019. He is currently the Senior Lecturer in Rural and Global Health at Keele Medical School in the UK. His passion for rural practice remains unabated and is determined to engage with young doctors and the Young Doctor Movements around the world. He believes strongly that the future of rural practice lies in their hands and the profession needs to engage and enthuse future rural doctors.
Dr Belinda O’Sullivan
B Physio (Hons), MPH (Hons), Grad Dip App Epi, PhD
Belinda is a physiotherapist with public health training with a background in vocational competency-based training. She pursued a career in rural research to inform equity and access of healthcare for rural populations. She gained her PhD in 2016 working within Australia’s major longitudinal survey of Australian doctors (called MABEL), studying rural outreach service models. Her current research interests relate to rural health workforce training, models of care and tools for rural communities. She supported the development of Australia’s national rural generalist pathway, as the Director Research and Evidence in the Office of the National Rural Health Commissioner. In 2018, she commenced collaborating with rural WONCA to lead work on the WHO-sponsored rural pathways checklist. She currently works at The University of Queensland Rural Clinical School.
Dr Tiana Gurney
BBus (Hons), PhD
Dr Tiana Gurney has worked in the health care research environment for the past 13 years in both an academic and industry capacity. In her career thus far Dr Gurney has had the privilege of working for a global social research organisation, holding an ARC Fellow position, writing university funding submissions for a wide variety of disciplines, managing and implementing programs in a primary health care setting and directing a social research consulting company. Dr Gurney is passionate about rural health care and providing an evidence base on which decisions and directions can impact rural communities in a positive manner.
Ms Amie Bingham
BA (Hons), BSc, MPH
With a background in sociological research, Amie is a mixed methods academic researcher who has worked in public health research for over a decade. Her work has focussed strongly on health systems and workforce, particularly on primary care and the provision of care to marginalised or under-served populations. Current research interests include rural health workforce, particularly the impact of rural clinical training for medical students in developing a rural health workforce, and also understanding the role of ‘place’ in determining health outcomes. Amie believes strongly in equitable health systems, and in services that are cognisant of and responsive to the needs of rural communities.
Ryan McDonald-Smith is the resident website developer for Rural WONCA and runs a small digital design and marketing agency from his home just outside the rural town of Theodore. Having grown up in Brisbane, Ryan moved with his wife to a family cattle property in 2015 for a “tree change” and has happily settled into the rural lifestyle. Specialising in branding and design, his business Younique Creation helps companies from all over Australia, and internationally, with creative web and print solutions.