Dale Bosenberg always knew what he wanted to do.
Growing up on a farm at Wagin in the Great Southern region of Western Australia, at about 13 years of age he was off to boarding school in Perth before going to medical school – but there was never a doubt he would return to the country.
“I was always going back to the country, always had rural GP lined up,” he says.
“Being from a rural background it was initially about where I wanted to live, and then in med school the allure of GP and generalist GP became more appealing.
“The RCS year in Esperance solidified my view. The biggest benefit was the perspective it gave me – putting into context the questions of ‘why am I doing this’, ‘what do I actually want to achieve here’. It is very easy to lose perspective when you are in a tertiary hospital, in the rat race.”
Apart from confirming Dale’s approach to life and career, his RCS year in 2010 also yielded significant benefits in the practice of medicine.
One of the most significant things I gained from the health professional crew in Esperance was that you had to have confidence and independence in your practice because otherwise it suffocates you. You cannot be always questioning what you are doing, you have to be sure-footed.
“They were all so different, but they were all so sure-footed and confident in what they were doing. They were all steadfast, strong generalist doctors or health professionals.”
As for the patients, Dale found that the “continuity of care over the 12 months was really striking; an amazing relationship with some of the patients.”
Another relationship has even stronger bonds for him – he met his wife while on his RCS year and, now, with baby son Ari, they will return to live in Esperance in August 2016, when Dale will join a practice after completing his Diploma in Anaesthetics.
Apart from the lifestyle on offer for the family, Dale also looks forward to the professional challenge Esperance holds.
“When it comes to resources, I think it can be a double edged sword. “It is very nice to have the specialists and support clinics nearby so you can direct patients to them, but without them there is greater reliance in your own skills. It can be at times (a) exhausting, but (b) enriching in the long term.”