Interprofessional Rural Program of BC



Rural communities are a rich learning environment for students from all health science professions. The very nature of health care in rural practice where services are centralized, resources may be limited and there is a close connection with community, often results in collaborative practice. Students on placement in rural communities have the opportunity to gain skills for collaborative practice and to experience the continuum of care and determinants of health in a rural community. Health Sciences students can experience rural placements as part of their educational program. These rural communities love students so it can also be great fun!

Here are some quotes from students who took part in IRPbc placements:

This experience changed my view of people who live in rural areas. It opened my eyes to the bigger “health care” picture.

I am definitely considering rural medicine because my experience was AWESOME!

The expanded scope of practice especially for OT was surprising and attractive.

It also gave me an understanding of clients that I may see in the urban care facility that come from a rural setting.

Advice from former students/communities:

  • Introduce yourself.
  • Learn all you can, from everyone you can.
  • Shadow other students and/or health professionals early in your rural experience.
  • If you want an experience, just ask!

If you are interested in a placement in rural BC, talk to your placement coordinator about the opportunities that are available.
View nursing student Carl Jacks’ experience in Bella Coola summer 2009:

Watch the Online Film — IRPbc Learning Together in Rural Communities

Through the experiences of an interprofessional student team, the ten minute film Learning Together in Rural Communities highlights the voices of students, the passion of people living in rural communities, and the natural beauty of British Columbia.