Medical students can make a difference
Wednesday, 28 March 2007
Hundreds of medical students from around Australia and New Zealand will gather in Adelaide later this year to discuss how they can make a difference to people's health in the third world.
The University of Adelaide will host the third annual Australian Medical Students Association (AMSA) Developing World Conference, organised by medical students for medical students. Registration for the conference opens today (Wednesday 28 March).
"Every year, many hundreds of Australians - among them young doctors and medical students - travel to the third world to help people. But how can you help a situation you don't understand?" asks Asha Patel, a fifth-year medical student at the University of Adelaide, who is Convener of the conference.
"Problems in the third world are as complex as they are deep. There is an enormous matrix of social, political and economic factors that cause, contribute and perpetuate problems in the third world," she says.
"As many young doctors and medical students begin to realise this, they begin to lose hope. They start to think they'll never understand these issues because they don't even know where to begin learning about them."
That's where the Developing World Conference comes in. Established in 2005, the annual event brings medical students together to learn about third world health. The conference will feature local, interstate and international speakers working in the fields of public health, economics, history, politics, engineering, human rights, bioethics, law, and medicine.
Dr Rowan Gillies, International President of Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) will deliver a keynote address at the conference, providing valuable insights into humanitarian work and the inner workings of the world's leading independent humanitarian organisation for medical aid.
"With more than 300 medical students from across Australia and New Zealand expected to attend, this year's conference promises to be the biggest one yet," Asha says.
The AMSA Developing World Conference 2007 will be held at the University of Adelaide from 28 June to 1 July.
For more information about the conference, visit:
Note to media: if Asha is in a class when you call, leave a message and she will call you back asap.
Medical student, University of Adelaide
Convener, AMSA Developing World Conference 2007
Mobile: 0431 444 572
Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762