"I am currently in my fourth and final year, studying Nursing and Paramedicine. This year, I was fortunate enough to receive the Philip Malouf Perpetual Scholarship, enabling me to participate in an overseas professional experience. I chose to attend the 18th World Congress on Emergency and Disaster Medicine, in Manchester: United Kingdom!
"There were all sorts of important people in Manchester presenting research about heaps of different topics and I was really excited to hear about the different ambulance services from around the world. Here's a fun fact that made me realise how fortunate we are in Australia. In Delhi there is a population of 16 million people and only 36 ambulances! The roads are so clogged up in Delhi that the ambulances can't actually reach the patients and the taxi drivers are the first point of contact to the patients.
It was really interesting to hear different leaders from around the world debate about implementing different strategies for improving emergency care, such as offering incentives and training to taxi drivers, encouraging their help and assistance.
"On a national level, it was fascinating to learn about the importance of resilience planning when it comes to being prepared for disasters, involving community awareness. At one of the presentations I attended, it was emphasised that Australia is one of the most dangerous places in the world to live, in terms of the natural disasters we experience. Currently, there is an expectation from the community that the government will look after us in these circumstances. However during mass casualty incidents, there are shortages of resources such as ambulances and fire fighting services and therefore in Australia we need to create awareness about how to take responsibility for our own safety. This message was recurrent throughout the conference I attended. Hopefully I will have the opportunity to become more involved in this area of health promotion in the future.
"The congress was a very exciting and an excellent opportunity to network with other health care professionals from around the world. I feel extremely privileged to have attended: helping me to develop independence and confidence! I would encourage others to apply for the Philip Malouf Perpetual Scholarship, as it provides an invaluable and unique learning experience."
The Philip Malouf Perpetual Scholarship is open nationally and to students undertaking any course. Click here to find out more.