Dubrovnik prepares for the 2015 WONCA World rural health conference

Dr John Wynn-Jones, Chair of WONCA Working Party on Rural Practice, sends seasons greetings and updates us on the preparations for the coming WONCA World rural health conference.

Dear All

2014 has been a busy and eventful year for me and for other members of the WWPRP. Rather than slowing down after our fantastic conference in Gramado, it seems to have become even busier and we are now hectically organising the programme for Dubrovnik. The WONCA Working Party on Rural Practice Google group has allowed us to prepare for conferences in a different way. Individuals come up with ideas for workshops and themes and small groups get together to plan their activities and submit abstracts accordingly. This is a unique experience for me and it makes conferences more relevant.

So much is happening and its would take me too long to outline all the themes and work plans that are being prepared but rest assured, it will be a great conference and a “not to be missed” moment.

Wherever I go and who ever I speak to, rural practice around the world is struggling to recruit health care professionals and convince the policy makers that rural needs are different to urban ones. The future of rural practice will fall onto the shoulders of the next generation of young doctors. We have to bring more young doctors and medical students into the WONCA Rural Family and I have been working with the Vasco da Gama (VdGM), WONCA’s other Young Doctors’ Movements and the International Federation of Medical Students (IFMSA) to develop a young/new doctor and medical student programme in Dubrovnik. We are trying to collect rural video diaries from around the world that will be screened at the conference. Please encourage your colleagues and medical students to help us.

Special thanks to Jo Scott Jones who is also coordinating the “Rural Heroes Gallery”. We want to acknowledge rural doctor champions who have made a difference either in their own countries or globally during 20th Century. Please send us your champions. You can find the template on the conference site. http://WONCArural2015.com

There are too many people to name individually but I want to thank you all for your contributions to WONCA Rural and rural health in 2014. Lets all make 2015 an important year for Rural Health and for WONCA.

I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible in Dubrovnik.

With a final thank you to Tanja, Ennis and the Croatian Dubrovnik team.

Have a great festive season to you all
Dr John Wynn-Jones
Chair of WONCA Working Party on Rural Practice.
  Read John's summary of the outputs of the last two World Rural Health conferences
  Read the latest Rural Round-up by Tanja Pekez-Pavlisko - "Dubrovnik - a temptation now and in history"
  Read about scholarships for young doctors to attend Dubrovnik