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NHS Education for Scotland

A skilled and sustainable workforce for a healthier Scotland

Scotland and Norway remote and rural healthcare symposium

Scotland and Norway remote and rural healthcare symposium

Scotland and Norway remote and rural healthcare symposium

The National Centre for Remote and Rural Health and Care team recently hosted a two-day symposium. It took place on 29 and 30 November in Aberdeen and Inverness in partnership with colleagues from the Norwegian Centre for Rural Medicine and the Norwegian College of GPs.

Scotland’s National Centre is leading work to help address remote and rural healthcare inequalities and improve primary care in remote, rural and island settings, enhancing workforce capability and the delivery of community-based services.

Norwegian colleagues had expressed interest in the range of remote and rural healthcare research, recruitment, education, and professional development programmes underway or planned in Scotland. Over 70 colleagues from Norway travelled to Scotland to participate in the event. The programme featured presentations from a range of key remote and rural experts from across Scotland as well as Professors Roger and Sarah Strasser, who are world experts on rural medicine and healthcare.

Dr Pam Nicoll, Associate Director of Medicine, NHS Education for Scotland (NES) said:

“We have enjoyed a great working relationship with colleagues working in rural healthcare in Norway for many years. The symposium was a great opportunity for both countries to come together again and share our common challenges and some of the solutions in supporting improved healthcare provision in our remote & rural communities.
"We will continue to work in partnership with Norwegian rural healthcare colleagues and plan to build an international network to ensure ongoing knowledge exchange around key issues such as recruitment and retention, research, evaluation, education and rural leadership developments. We we have much to learn from each other.”

Helen Brandstorp, the Division Director at the Norwegian Directorate of Health said:

“Scotland’s relationship with Norway is not new. Both countries have actively participated in international programmes such as the Making it Work Framework for Remote & Rural Workforce Stability.
“The event was really a special event. Thank you for hosting it and doing it so nicely!
"I have never ever heard that nearly 70 busy people from different organisations, in one small country, decide to travel to a small symposium like the one you hosted.
"This was not advertised in Norway, different groups just found that this was something they wanted to join.
“The reputation of rural medicine in Scotland is simply outstanding and we were not disappointed!”


January, 09 2024