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Tuesday 16 February 2016 1:48pm

Dr Carol Atmore (MB ChB FRNZCGP MSc DipObs DipComEmergMed) has held many roles within the healthcare system which position her well to undertake the research project 'Exploring and improving hospital care quality for New Zealand rural communities'.

For the next two years Dr Atmore will be based in the Department of General Practice and Rural Health on a Health Research Council Foxley Fellowship. Her research will involve two linked pieces of work. She will be working on a secondary analysis of Professor Susan Dovey's HRC project that investigates patient harms in general practice. Specifically, the project will investigate differences in patient harms for people from rural and urban communities who receive hospital services, with the aim of understanding and improving the quality of health care for people from rural communities.

Dr Atmore will also interview rural health providers, iwi and community groups to investigate what contributes to high quality hospital services, and how service design influences quality. The research will identify actions that can improve the quality of hospital care received by rural communities which will then be shared with rural health care planners, funders, providers, iwi and communities to inform future rural health service redesign.

“I'm hoping that the research findings will contribute to the sustainability of health services in our rural communities throughout New Zealand as this is going to be an ever bigger challenge in the future. I'm excited about the opportunity that has been afforded me to undertake this research and I'm very grateful to the HRC for that.”

Carol has been a general practitioner for 20 years and is currently working at Mornington Health Centre. She holds senior health leadership and system redesign roles including Clinical Advisor to Alliance South, an alliance between Southern District Health Board and WellSouth Primary Health Organisation; as well as being Chair of Strategic Planning and Integration Team (SPaIT) for the South Island DHB Health Alliance. Dr Atmore was the Chief Medical Officer for the West Coast DHB from 2010 until 2015.

She has a Masters in Public Health as well as her clinical qualifications. Prior to moving to Dunedin she undertook a sabbatical as an international visiting fellow at the King's Fund in London. She now resides in Dunedin with her family.

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