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The Rural Health Academic Centre ( RHAC ), Ashburton is a collaboration between University of Otago Christchurch, Canterbury District Health Board and the Advance Ashburton Community Foundation.

Located within Ashburton Hospital, RHAC is a physical and virtual hub for inter-professional rural health training and research. RHAC focuses on rurally relevant education, research, clinical skills. and simulation, and links a diverse academic faculty across the South Island.

A simulation suite and training centre was completed in 2019 which caters for skills training and courses such as the Rural Inter-professional Simulation Course.

A faculty development stream for interprofessional rural practitioners has also been described with the aim of growing a pool of simulation based education practitioners across New Zealand.

Rural Inter-professional Simulation Course

Rural Simulation Faculty Development Plan (PDF)

Areas of research include:

  • Inter-professional education
  • Rural teamwork and simulation training
  • Procedural sedation in rural hospitals
  • Self-harm in rural populations
  • Rural models of care and health service delivery
  • Rural nursing workforce projections and planning
  • Rural oncology service scope and outcomes
  • Stroke management
  • Chest pain assessment in rural hospitals

Our people

  • Dr Marc GutensteinClinical Senior Lecturer, Emergency Physician, Rural Hospital Medicine Specialist
  • Dr Steve WithingtonSenior Lecturer, Consultant Physician, Rural Hospital Medicine Specialist
  • Jane Wright, Nurse Researcher, Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist
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