The Office of Rural & Regional Health advocates and develops policies and programs to increase the rural and regional focus within the University of Alberta’s medical programs. We aim to assist the faculty in fulfilling its social responsibility to the rural and regional communities in Alberta.
We focus primarily on encouraging the growth of the Rural Rotations Program for medical learners. A main priority is to continue developing new rural and regional rotation sites, while maintaining relations with current rotation sites. We also encourage Family Medicine and Royal College residents to engage in rotations and programs.
These efforts support our work with the Alberta Rural Physician Action Plan (RPAP). Together, we aim to fulfil their mandate of increasing physician numbers in rural Alberta by providing learners with opportunities for rural and regional experiences early in their careers.
What We Do:
- Facilitate and co-ordinate the delivery of current rural and regional programs undertaken through the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, particularly the Rural Rotations Program and the rural and regional family medicine programs.
- Support rural clinical instructors and rural teaching sites by acting as liaison, providing university resources and faculty development.
- Manage the finances of all rural and regional rotations (budgeting, management, reporting) for the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.
- Assist programs within the faculty in the cultivation and recruitment of new sites for rural and regional rotations and programs.
- Ensure that all learners understand the policies governing a rural and regional rotation (i.e. accommodation, preceptor contact, financial reimbursement, etc.).
- Maintain site and profile information about the rural and regional sites in use by the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.
- Annually confirm site availability for all sites used for rural and regional rotations and notify program administrators for scheduling purposes.
- Arrange financial reimbursements to learners, physicians and sites for expenses incurred during the rotation (e.g., accommodation, travel, meals, preceptor honoraria, etc.).
- Produce an annual report showing the results of rural and regional rotations during the previous year.
- Advocate for evidence-based changes to admissions, policies and curriculum design.
- Deliver evidence-based changes that will increase the number of U of A graduates who choose generalist careers in medicine, particularly in rural and regional communities.
- Act as a liaison between the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry and the Rural Physician Action Plan.
- Strengthen communication and understanding between rural and regional communities and the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.
- Collaborate with the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Medicine’s Distributed Learning and Rural Initiatives on province-wide rural and regional initiatives.
- Co-ordinate with other external parties for the collaboration on projects or initiatives rurally and regionally based, where the opportunity arises.