I am from Mumbai and have always lived in big cities – buildings, traffic, and people always busy, the fast life as they say. I wanted a change, to experience the life in the rural/remote areas but was not sure if I would be able to adapt. My placements at Mount Isa, both at the hospital and in the community, have been a treasure chest of experience and knowledge. The small-town experience was amazing and immersive to the point that it feels you really fit in. There is more nature, less traffic and people were very approachable.
Within my two placements I was very lucky to have the opportunity to experience four different locations. During the hospital placement I was able to experience inter-professional interaction and communication. With the travel health pharmacy, I had a one-day visit to a Camooweal, a town near Mount Isa. The opportunity to shadow experienced pharmacists who are specialised in areas of medical, renal/hepatic, oncology and travel health gave me exposure to a diverse range of cases and patients with a range of medical conditions, which made it very interesting and informative.
The community placement was different to any city pharmacy. The pharmacy was closely working with Gidgee Healing, a primary health care provider helping the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community with free consultations, medicines and wound management. In the absence of public transport, it was essential to have delivery or patient pick-up/drop services in place to make health care more accessible. The pharmacy had to also predict what medication would be needed in future as orders were not timely due to COVID-19, with wait times over two months.