3 January 2023

'There is no way I would go anywhere else': Dr Alam Yoosuff

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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Dr Alam Yoosuff

Dr Alam Yoosuff moved to Australia from Sri Lanka in 2006 and had the choice of going to Darwin, Ipswich or Finley. Photo: Murrumbidgee Local Health District.

Finley’s Dr Alam Yoosuff has dedicated his medical career to taking care of his patients in the region.

Dr Yoosuff’s career aspirations were to work in a regional area for the challenge and the variety of work.

“I like to do general practice, looking after people in the community in a room, sitting and doing consultations,” Dr Yoosuff said.

“I like to do emergency medicine, looking after people when they are in a dire state.

“I like to look after my patients when they are hospitalised in an inpatient unit and when they can’t live in their own home and go to aged care.”

He said from the day someone was born until the day they passed away, there would be a space in which he would look after the patient in Finley.

Dr Yoosuff said no two days were the same for him.

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“I am always seeing different things, challenging myself and learning new things forever.”

He said working in Finley gave him the freedom to practise the art of medicine to his liking.

Dr Yoosuff said he would not be able to do what he wanted to do in the city.

“There is no way I would go anywhere else.”

The Sri Lankan-born general practitioner moved to Australia in 2006 with his wife.

Dr Yoosuff had the option of going to Darwin, Ipswich or Finley. Even though he wanted to move to Darwin, his wife chose Finley.

Eighteen years and two children (aged 12 and 7) later, the doctor has embedded himself in Finley.

The tight-knit community of Finley had welcomed the doctor and his family with open arms and provided a vehicle, accommodation and a secure support network.

Dr Yoosuff has been running the Murrumbidgee Rural Generalist Training Pathway (MRGTP) as the program director the past three years.

MRGTP is a Murrumbidgee Local Health District (MLHD), University of New South Wales’ Murrumbidgee Rural Training Hub, NSW Health and the Federal Ministry of Health initiative.

“I was involved in negotiating and collaborating with general practices around the Murrumbidgee area including Deniliquin, Young, Cootamundra, Temora, Gundagai and Narrandera to get the pathway operationalised,” Dr Yoosuff said.

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“The most important difference with the Murrumbidgee Rural Generalist Training Pathway is that the general practice registrar is employed by MLHD and therefore have all the same employment benefits as other hospital-based registrars employed by NSW Health.

“This is not heard of in general practice.”

The rural generalist training pathway gives GPs a four-to-six-year contract working across hospitals and GP clinics throughout the MLHD.

The doctors thrive, as they are faced with different challenges while working in more remote settings.

Dr Yoosuff said that with the MRGTP, there was an opportunity to identify talented, rural interested medical students or interns and then grow them.

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