As a rural hospital doctor, you will be challenged to work across a wide range of clinical presentations and focus on secondary care; a Swiss army knife of medicine.

About the rural hospital doctor training programme

Living outside the hustle and bustle of city life will open the door to some of New Zealand’s most beautiful outdoors.

The Division of Rural Hospital Medicine grew as a new branch in 2008 to tackle growing vocational issues within small rural hospitals.

The Division of Rural Hospital Medicine provides doctors with an accredited training programme to become a Fellow of Rural Hospital Medicine.

This career path builds on general practitioner skills and requires a broad body of generalist knowledge and specific skills.

What are rural hospitals?


  • Hospitals that are easily accessible for patients in small towns
  • Oriented in responsive secondary care
  • Contain doctors with a wide knowledge base
  • Fewer resources and greater communication with other hospitals
  • Care for cultural and sociologically diverse range of patients

Find out more about the programme

How to apply

The next round of applications for the Rural Hospital Training Programme open in February 2020, with the programme commencing in Dec 2020. 

Follow the our Facebook page for updates. 

Find out more



Rural hospital doctor profiles

Read about some of our Rural Hospital Doctors doing incredible work in their communities.

Read more

Rural hospital medicine curriculum


Representing rural hospital doctors, the College:

  • Defines professional standards
  • Offers an accredited training programme to attain Fellowship of Rural Hospital Medicine
  • Provides lifetime education and collegial support (CPD)
  • Shares future Rural Hospital Medicine research.