Bronwyn’s story

Date published

12 Feb 2020

For Charlton local Bronwyn, having a pap smear used to require a seven hour round trip to Melbourne and back. Now, thanks to the RFDS Victoria’s Rural Women’s GP service, Bronwyn can choose to be seen by a female GP in her local community.

The Rural Women’s GP services exists to provide both a gender choice for rural communities, and also an external GP option – with many people feeling uncomfortable about talking about sensitive issues with someone they know through the community. GPs service a number of towns throughout Victoria, visiting every 6 – 8 weeks, building a rapport with clients and providing a continuity of care that can be difficult to find in country areas.

Bronwyn describes the service as a “godsend”, speaking to the comfort it’s brought her, as well as the difference it has made to her community.

“You don’t feel rushed in and rushed out, you have time to talk to them, time to have your breast exam, your pap smear, and comfortably get dressed and go back out again.”

“It has been really good for young girls who want somebody that they feel comfortable with and the mums feel comfortable with [too]. It is a service that is so appreciated by our community.”

A recent diabetes diagnosis has also led Bronwyn to the RFDS Victoria telehealth platform, through which she is able to link in to the Baker Institute Endocrinology Service for appointments with an endocrinologist. This removes the pressure, both financial and otherwise, of another trip into Melbourne, something that Bronwyn is very grateful for.

“The Rural Women’s GP service and telehealth are fantastic,” says Bronwyn. “Thank you for the opportunity to support a program I believe in.”