Brian Williams Award

Paul Hayes

25/10/2017 12:00:00 AM

As GPs are often wont to do, Dr Denise Powell’s first instinct was to defer praise when discussing winning the 2017 RACGP Rural Brian Williams Award, which acknowledges a practitioner whose guidance and support enables rural GPs to dedicate themselves to their patients, families and communities.

Dr Denise Powell, winner of the RACGP's 2017 Brian Williams Award
Dr Denise Powell, winner of the RACGP's 2017 Brian Williams Award

‘It is a great acknowledgment of the work that my colleagues have done,’ she told Good Practice. ‘I was very surprised and honoured that they thought enough of rural women to nominate me when they have also done the same amount of work towards progressing rural medicine that I have.’

A long-time resident and GP in Queensland’s Bundaberg region, Dr Powell initially planned a career in psychiatry, but came to love the frontline aspect of rural general practice.

‘As I was progressing through medicine as a student, I believed in my great naiveté that it would be more useful to try to work with people at the beginning rather that at the significantly progressed and end stages of mental health,’ she said. ‘I think working in general practice suits me best.’

Dr Powell is passionate about general practice education, and not just for medical students and general practice registrars.

‘I think developing general practice for people other than doctors is really important, so I have had a number of nurses and a physician’s assistant train in my practice,’ she said. ‘Most of my administrative staff have qualifications as medical assistants.’



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