Bathurst MP Paul Toole has this morning welcomed 17 Assistants in Medicine (AiM) to Bathurst Hospital.

This follows the decision by the Bathurst Health Service to participate in a new initiative that will see final year medical students trained to provide support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr Toole said that NSW Health announced around 200 final year medical students will work in hospitals across the state in non-COVID hospital wards as Assistants in Medicine (AiM) as part of the NSW COVID-19 response.

“AiMs will work under supervision as part of a medical team providing patient care in non-COVID wards performing tasks including admitting and reviewing patients, and taking blood,” he said.

“Final year medical students have been able to express an interest to be assessed for the AiM role and are then able to be employed by Local Health Districts, including today’s placement in Bathurst.”

Bathurst Health Service General Manager, Cathy Marshall said 17 of their final year medical students expressed an interest to undertake these supervised AiM roles within the hospital.

“It also means it will take the pressure off our existing doctors if we experience a second wave of COVID-19,” she said.

Western NSW Local Health District Executive Director of Medical Services, Dr Clayton Spencer said this exciting new program allows final year medical students to provide support for more senior doctors to manage the COVID-19 response.

“It also allows for the students to better prepare for the challenges of their intern year and be more ‘work ready’ when they finish their training and start working as a doctor,” Dr Spencer said.

“This is just another example of the considered and robust response to COVID-19 across our District. It’s also testament to the strong relationship that Bathurst Health Service has with the Rural Medical School and its students and their sound preparation.”

The NSW Government is also delivering $800 million extra funding for NSW Health to help boost ICU capacity and purchase additional services and medical equipment.