Opening remarks at the SRPC’s 2013 Rural and Remote Medical Course in Victoria, BC
The Society of Rural Physicians of Canada’s (SRPC) set a new world record for the second year in a row by hosting the world’s largest rural medical conference in Victoria from April 4-6, 2013.
The SPRC saw a staggering 951 attendees partake in pre-courses, presentations, workshops, plenaries, and networking activities. Last year’s record-breaking conference was attended by approximately 750 physicians, residents, medical students and other allied healthcare professionals.
Rural healthcare providers gathered together in Victoria, BC to engage in accredited learning; however, the true value of the SRPC conference lies in networking. Dr. Mary Johnston, RCCbc Rural Conference Coordinator, and conference organizers, notes that events like the Rural and Remote Medical Course allows practitioners to “share their stories, discuss complex cases, and speak with colleagues who understand both the challenges and rewards of rural medicine.“ This type of face-to-face contact greatly reduces the isolation felt by rural practitioners, especially those who serve in small, remote locales.
There were a large number of medical students and residents in attendance at this year’s conference, their attendance sponsored by the Rural Education Action Plan (REAP) and the Joint Standing Committee on Rural Issues (JSC). Many established rural physicians commented on the “buzz” younger attendees brought to the conference this year and were appreciative of trainees’ genuine interest in rural medicine.
Next year’s SRPC Rural and Remote Medicine Course will move on to Banff, AB. RCCbc and REAP will return to hosting a conference for BC rural healthcare providers in the late spring of 2014. Details of the 2014 conference will be announced in future issues of BC Rural Update.
The Joint Standing Committee on Rural Issues and RCCbc are proud supporters of the SRPC 2013 Rural and Remote Medical Course.