Congratulations to BUSHkids Chairman Dr Neil Bartels

On behalf of the TROHPIQ team we would like to congratulate Dr Neil Bartels, Chairman of BUSHkids, who has been awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in the 2018 Australia Day Honours List for his service to medicine in rural and regional areas. TROHPIQ is a proud supporter of BUSHkids, a not for profit organisation providing primary health care to children and their families in rural Queensland communities.

Statement from BUSHkids:
The award recognises his many decades of commitment to the health of children, families and communities across rural and regional Queensland, a calling nurtured early in Neil’s medical studies by his father Reg Bartels, Chair of the Bush Children’s Health Scheme Council at the time and himself a recipient of the OAM in 1984.

“This is a tremendous honour not only for me, but for my wife Annette and my family,” said Dr Bartels. “It also reflects the work of a dedicated team of great Queenslanders and the many people who have gone before us and laid solid foundations.”

Reg Bartels OAM had joined the Bush Children’s Council in a voluntary role in 1966 and served for more than 25 years. Shortly after his father’s death in May 1991, Dr Neil Bartels followed in his footsteps and joined the Council where, more than 25 years later – and after 11 years as its Chair – he has been similarly recognised for his volunteer efforts.

Neil was inspired by his father’s work with BUSHkids whilst studying medicine. After graduating from The University of Queensland, Neil married Annette, a primary school teacher, and they moved to regional Queensland when Neil started work as Medical Superintendent in Dysart. After the birth of the first of their five children, the family relocated to Brisbane when Neil was appointed Paediatric Registrar of the Royal Children’s Hospital. Later opening his own medical practice on the Gold Coast, Neil maintained his “burning desire” to continue to serve rural children and families across Queensland.

Please click here to read the full media release.

BUSHkids Chairman Dr Neil Bartels at the TROHPIQ Bowties and Beauties Charity Gala. This is an annual event run by TROHPIQ to raise money for BUSHkids.


TREES Program 2017

Over the last few months, a group of 28 first year medical students chose to complete their first year medical observership in a rural location. The TROHPIQ Rural Elective Experience Scholarship is a program run by the UQ Rural Clinical School in conjunction with TROHPIQ. TREES provides students with the opportunity to experience regional and rural Queensland, gain fantastic hands-on learning experiences, and meet some awe-inspiring rural practitioners.

Reports from students who participated in the program have been overwhelmingly positive. There’s no doubt that there were plenty of opportunities for students to practice and develop their clinical skills. Full reports from students are now available via this link and some excerpts are included below. Congratulations to all students on completing their first medical placement and for choosing the challenging but rewarding environment of a rural location.

Connor Dorval – Roma Hospital

“Aside from having met so many wonderful people, by far the best part of coming to Roma is the way the students are integrated into the health care team, even as a first year with very little clinical experience. What will you be doing day to day? Much of your time is spent in the Emergency Department, where you are not only allowed but encouraged to review patients that have been triaged. You’ll take histories, perform physical exams, form a provisional diagnosis, then handover to a doctor – a skill in and of itself. You can then follow that patient’s case through to the end, working through any clinical reasoning, imaging, and test results with the doctor.

The biggest piece of advice I can offer is to volunteer for everything, even if it seems scary. Introduce yourself to every doctor and nurse and give them a heads-up if you have any special interests.”

Screen Shot 2017-12-29 at 2.55.01 PM
Connor Dorval completed his TREES placement at Roma Hospital. “The highlight of my placement was the chance to fly with the Royal Flying Doctor Service and a Flying Surgeon to Cunnamulla and Charleville.

Belinda Burgess – Kingaroy Hospital 2017

“During my TREES placement, I have had the opportunity to experience the emergency department, OBS & GYN, the medical/surgical ward and theatre lists. Some highlights of my time here include suturing lots of hands and fingers in ED, learning how to cannulate and intubate with the anaesthetist in theatre, scrubbing in to a hernia repair, attending birth suite with the midwives and assisting an emergency Caesarian.

I am very much indebted to the medical, nursing and midwifery staff here at Kingaroy. From day 1, everybody has gone out of their way to welcome us to the team and encourage us to actively participate in patient care. All of the staff, and particularly the senior medical officers, have demonstrated a passion and aptitude for medical education that has ensured that my time here has been a fruitful learning experience.”

Screen Shot 2017-12-27 at 7.38.45 AM.png

Thank you to the UQ Rural Clinical School and the health professionals that worked to make this such a fantastic experience for all the students involved.

Joint Rural Health Club Weekend 2017

Joint Rural Health Club Weekend


The JRHCW 2017 held in Emerald was attended by 11 TROHPIQ students this year including a variety of health students. The weekend provided a unique opportunity for students of various backgrounds from rural health clubs all over QLD to network and optimise their skills in a range of teaching sessions. In between all the delicious meals, students also had the chance mingle with many renowned health professionals and notable community leaders to hear about their experiences in rural health.

Congratulations to the 2018 Team

The 2017 TROHPIQ AGM was held last Tuesday 3rd October. We were delighted to see so many enthusiastic faces, both known and new! Congratulations to the incoming TROHPIQ Executive and Management committees for 2018. With such a fantastic team, we are sure you will do great things and are excited to see where you will take TROHPIQ next year!

Executive Committee
Past President: Laura Frederiksen
President: Shaiba Chatterjee
Vice President: Fiona Edwards
Treasurer: Imogen Aitkins
Secretary: Imogen Gilpin
NAHO Education: Jessica Thackeray
NAHO Social: Amelia Young
Communications & IT Officer: Brigid King
NRHSN + Membership Officer: Sjors Plugge

Management Committee
MDII rep: Belinda Burgess & Patrice Brennan
OT Rep: Maginnis Connell
Rockhampton Rep: Timothy Thorne & Luke Ciantar
Hervey Bay Rep: Alice Ann Wyche
Bundaberg Rep: Vivek Padmanabhan & Amy Shang
Toowoomba Rep: Elise Witter & Emma Chan
Scholarships, Bursaries & conferences Officer: Bruno Perthus
Education Officer: Taylor Brooks
Skills Day Convenors: Belinda Burgess, Patrice Brennan & Grace Boyd
RHSV Convenors: Emma Chan & Brandon Ng
Cherbourg Trip Convenors: Elise Witter & Taylor Brooks
Wide Bay Trip Convenors: Lauren Pienaar & Sarah Harten
Rockhampton Trip Convenors: Sophie Gong & Sarah Harten
Toowoomba Trip Convenors: Elise Witter & Rosannah Blackwood
Bowties & Beauties Convenors: Belinda Burgess & Lauren Pienaar

Some positions are still open to join the 2018 TROHPIQ team. Apply now at or email for information

2017-18 AGM

Nominations are now open for the 2018 TROHPIQ Executive and Management Committees!

If you or someone you know would like to get involved behind-the-scenes for TROHPIQ, consider nominating below. Applications are open at: (close 5pm Saturday 23rd Sept)

More information about TROHPIQ and the executive and management roles located here:

If you would like more detail about any specific roles, please email

Nominations close 5pm Saturday 23rd September 2017.
Online voting will be open from Monday 25th September – Sunday 1st October 2017.
Save the date for the TROHPIQ AGM, which will be held Tuesday 3rd October 2017.


– You are able to nominate yourself or someone else. If you are nominating someone else, please let them know.

– You are able to (and encouraged to) nominate for multiple roles. However, if you are elected to an executive position, it precludes you from being elected for management positions due to the time commitment of the executive.

– Nominees must be TROHPIQ members.


Screen Shot 2017-09-16 at 1.02.32 PM