Case Studies & Profiles

Rural Generalist Training

Case study

A training pathway benefitting junior doctors and rural communities

Having a professional body to help you negotiate through NSW Rural Generalist Training, and give you support along the way is extremely useful.

Dr Luke Manestar-Forde, NSW Rural Generalist Medical Training Program graduate.

Dr Luke Manestar-Forde realised early on in his medical training that he wanted to pursue a career as a Rural Generalist with advanced procedural skills that could support a rural community. Two years on from completing this training with the NSW Rural Generalist Medical Program, Luke feels settled in his role as a General Practitioner (GP) Anaesthetist living and working in the rural community of Griffith in south western NSW. He divides his week between delivering anaesthetic services at two local hospitals and offering primary care as a GP.

“I did my third year of medicine in a rural clinical school in Cooma, in southern NSW. I was really inspired by the work of the Rural Generalists there. I knew then that Rural General Practice with an advanced skill was something to consider,” Luke says.

Luke hasn’t followed the typical rural doctor pathway, coming to medicine as a mature age student and completing his GP training prior to entering the NSW Rural Generalist Medical Training Program. The flexibility and coordinated approach offered by the Program was a major contributing factor to Luke's positive experience.

“To try to negotiate your way through [the complex pathway] can be a little bit difficult, so having a professional body that will help you do that - and give you support along the way - is very useful,” he says, adding that the Rural Generalist Team were extremely helpful in answering his questions and connecting him with the other training and networking opportunities.

“For me, this program isn’t just important for training rural general practitioners to have advanced skills; providing access to this training also helps to ensure services are available within rural and remote communities. Ultimately, we are providing services so people don’t have to travel 500 kilometres to have their baby delivered or have other treatments and that’s crucial.”

Key benefits

  • Choice of advanced skills pathways
  • Flexible entry points
  • Access to additional training, conferences, networking, mentoring
  • Career advice


  • >130 trainees in the program
  • 6 advanced skills pathways

The Program