Indigenous Health Scholarship 2023
Monash University, VIC
Doctor of Medicine
Scholarship Awarded 2023
Dr King Gan
How will I contribute to improving Indigenous health as a qualified medical practitioner or health worker?
I am an Aboriginal woman from the Yorta-Yorta nation, and a mature age student with a young family. I have wanted to become a medical doctor and work within the Indigenous community for a long time, but simply was not ready as ‘life and family’ prevented me from doing it sooner. Prior to starting medicine, I was working as an Alcohol and Other Drugs worker (AOD). I was working specifically with Aboriginal women suffering from substance abuse as a result of trauma, domestic violence and other life challenges. Working alongside with these women made me realise how much more I can offer if I were medically trained.
There seemed to be a ‘gap’ with the level of care from a medical perspective when these women visited a General Practitioner as a required part of the program. The women would often complain of not ‘being heard’ and being ‘judged’ as an addict rather as a woman trying to get her life back without substance abuse. Achieving this degree will give my voice more power to deliver and contribute to the change that is desperately needed to improve the overall health and well-being of Indigenous peoples and other vulnerable communities. I am truly dedicated to becoming a GP or rural generalist to help reduce the burden of care of rural and remote communities with Indigenous health my top priority.