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Coleraine Casterton Medical Centre – TT 1-4

This practice will accept applications from Training Term (TT) 1-4 registrars.

Coleraine Casterton Medical Centre provides GP cover to the towns of Casterton and Coleraine and the outlying communities with a regional population of around 6,000.

GP trainees will learn to manage a range of complex medical conditions such as renal failure, diabetes, heart disease and mental health. They will have the opportunity to extend their emergency medicine skills and oversee palliative care.

Trainees are well supported at the clinic and will have the opportunity to develop their skills with the assistance of their GP supervisors and a very supportive team of nurses and administration staff.

As a predominantly agricultural community, emergency presentations include work related injuries with fractures, stitching, foreign body removal and eye procedures all presenting regularly. Sports injuries are also common. The clinic sees a range of patients of all ages, including farmers, sports people, the elderly and children.

Senior GP supervisor, Dr Brian Coulson, said the practice offers GP trainees a unique opportunity.

“Our practice offers GP trainees the whole variety of general practice. They are exposed to complex and very sick people at times. It gives them some hospital work, some emergency work. It gives them access to special skills like learning radiology – you interpret your own films here if you want to. We do lots of skin procedures and learning about skin conditions. Working here allows them to continue to follow their own interests.” said Dr Coulson.

The beautiful beaches along the Great Ocean Road are only an hour away.  The world-renowned Grampians National Park is also just over an hours drive, featuring magnificent rugged cliffs and majestic waterfalls, or for the more adventurous, a range of extreme sports such as abseiling, rock climbing or quad-bike and horseback riding. Local leisure activities include a wide range of sports, together with walking, hiking and biking around the scenic countryside.

The practice holds GP clinics Monday to Friday and covers Casterton Memorial and Coleraine District Hospital for emergency cover and inpatient care. It also services residential care and nursing home places across the district (approx 130 beds) and attends weekly bush nursing centre clinics at Balmoral and Merino.

A visiting surgeon and physician attend fortnightly clinics. Community health and allied health services include audiologist, diabetic educator, social worker and psychologist. A pain clinic is held at Casterton. Visiting medical officer (VMO) rights are available at both Casterton and Coleraine hospitals. GP trainees are fully supported by a senior GP for after hours cover, which is generally a one-in-four roster.

Various referral options to specialist consultants are utilised and telehealth services are available. The practice refers to Mt Gambier for acute orthopaedics and obstetrics, Hamilton for surgery and acute medicines and Warrnambool for paediatrics, complex orthopaedics, renal medicine and oncology. Emergency retrievals are carried out by Victorian Adult Retrieval Service or by road ambulance.

The practice provides shared care for obstetric patients, up to about 28 weeks. Following delivery, patients have the option of returning to Casterton Hospital for post-natal care.

Accommodation can be negotiated with the practice owners and families are well-catered for with a child care centre in Casterton and two primary schools in both locations plus a high school in Casterton.

With the world-renowned Great Ocean Road on your doorstep, the area around Coleraine and Casterton has much to offer. Close to flourishing regional centres like Warrnambool and cultural treats like the Port Fairy Folk Festival, charming townships like Coleraine and Casterton have much to offer.

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GP trainees will train with dedicated, highly-qualified supervisors such as Dr Brian Coulson, who gained experience in both Australia and the UK and truly enjoys working with GP trainees.  As an accredited supervisor with both ACRRM and the RACGP, Dr Coulson has a long history in medical education, awarded by the Coleraine Lions Club with a lifetime recognition award for his community achievements.

Dr Coulson describes the practice as busy, varied and interesting.

“The clinic is fully booked. We don’t see coughs and colds, the community only come for serious stuff – many won’t come unless they are sure they, or their kids are really sick.” said Dr Coulson.

“On call is where you see the interesting stuff, the trauma stuff. Or sick kids, fractures. When we have trauma or acute patients, they are helicoptered out with the Victorian Adult Retrieval service.”

Dr Coulson explained that skin cancer screening and treatment of skin cancer and skin conditions is a major component of procedural and GP trainees have the opportunity to develop skills around skin lesion removal, cryotherapy, dermatoscopy and microscopy.

“As part of their experience, GP trainees also have the opportunity to develop skills and awareness of the processes around the coordination and management of emergency situations.” he said.

“Our older population have really interesting conditions. Our GP trainees will learn to manage significant cardiac failure, handle diabetes properly, manage palliative care and trauma, and at the other extreme, see kids and babies.”

See more about the practice here.