Rural Medicine advocate: Meet Dr Tom Dawson

26 March 2018

Category: Rural


Dr Tom Dawson is a rural bloke working in rural medicine. He鈥檚 a few weeks out from finishing his GPEP training, and hopes to complete his Division of Rural Hospital Medicine Fellowship by the end of the year. He recently shared some of his thoughts about what makes rural practice special with us.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I grew up in a small town 鈥 Morrinsville 鈥 now famous for being home to our new Prime Minister. I guess it鈥檚 not too surprising that I鈥檝e ended up living and working in a smaller town.

I鈥檓 currently working for a VLCA practice in Whanganui, but am about to shift to Hawera Hospital.

I鈥檝e been lucky enough to work with an amazing team of people, who are all really supportive of each other. One of the things I enjoy most about work is that our team members recognise each other鈥檚 strengths and skills, and by working well together we are able to deliver seamless, effective care to our patients. It鈥檚 very satisfying.

What attracted you to rural medicine?

The lifestyle is definitely a big drawcard. I have a young family and by living in a small community, we鈥檙e able to live by the beach and still be close to work. If there鈥檚 bad traffic on my morning commute, I get delayed by about 30 seconds!

About the rural hospital training:

The training has been amazing. I鈥檝e get to do a bit of everything because you never know what鈥檚 going to come through the door. I鈥檝e been able to do a lot of high level procedural clinical work and, while the academic component of the training has been challenging, it鈥檚 definitely been valuable.

Benefits of general practice and rural hospital medicine:

There鈥檚 so much opportunity to extend yourself. You never know what conditions you鈥檙e going to be faced with, and sometimes you鈥檙e working with limited resources, so you often have to extend yourself. It鈥檚 clinically satisfying and rewarding seeing the impact your work has on the lives of your patients.