Dr JuMP: medical mentoring for regional Victoria

In this year of increased isolation, pressure and workload on our medical workforce, the benefits of a mentoring relationship for both mentors and mentees has become more apparent.

In a collaboration between several industry bodies and regional training hubs, including the University of Melbourne Goulburn Valley Regional Training Hub, Dr JuMP was recently launched as a coordinated approach to medical mentoring in regional Victoria.

Dr Greg Coates and family
Dr Greg Coates and family

As rural GP Dr Greg Coates explains, a positive experience with a generous mentor many years ago set him on the path to discovering his passion for rural practice.

“In my final year of medical school (1989) I went on rural rotation for two weeks to Myrtleford to stay and work with Dr Glynn Brokensha, a country GP.” Dr Coates explains. “He had a great practice, a beautiful house and family, an orchard and even a vegetable garden. We attended school events, town meetings, vaccination clinics and more. We spent hours talking and tasting local wines on his porch. I remember feeling very grown-up and special, and a strong feeling of “I want this”. I think that was where it all started for me. My later married life came to mirror what I experienced in Myrtleford nearly 30 years ago,” says Dr Coates.

For some, being a mentor is about ‘giving back’ to an industry that at times can be daunting for young professionals while others see it as a good opportunity for succession planning in regional areas. Many mentors also talk about the learning that comes from discussing clinical challenges with junior doctors; those moments when the next generation brings a new perspective to a problem.

A coordinated approach to medical mentoring results in less cross-over amongst regions, health services and industry bodies, who all strive to embed a valuable mentoring program into their work.

For more information on Dr JuMP or to register as a mentor, a mentee or both, please visit https://mentorloop.com/drjumpportal or contact Alana Lee, Goulburn Valley Regional Training Hub:  alana.lee@unimelb.edu.au, 0427 875 255, https://staff.unimelb.edu.au/people?id=880480

Dr JuMP is a collaboration between Western Victoria Regional Training Hub, Border Regional Training Hub, North West Victorian Regional Training Hub, Gippsland Regional Training Hub, Goulburn Valley Regional Training Hub and Murray City Country Coast GP Training.