Locum Locations – Pitcairn Island
It is not often you can claim to have worked on one of the most remote inhabited islands on Earth. However, if you ask several of our Blugibbon locum doctors over the past 8 years, you will find them proudly saying yes! Dr Jack Dasculu spent couple of years as a locum doctor on Pitcairn Island.
In recent times we have had the fantastic Dr Jack , General Practitioner, become a regular fixture here and he kindly offered to summarise his experiences for our community.
Over to you Dr Jack:
Background of Dr Jack
My background is as a rural and remote GP. After selling my practice in Far North Queensland a few years ago I decided to become purely a locum doctor and travel.
In 2016 I found Blugibbon advertising for an exclusive position as a rural GP on Pitcairn Island, the second remotest place on earth, situated half way between Australia and Chile. I recalled the movie Mutiny on the Bounty and applied keenly for the job.
Thankfully I was approved after meeting with the Blugibbon team in Sydney and the British Overseas Authority that runs it.
Being the only locum doctor on Pitcairn Island
Thereafter began a wonderful experience lasting two years with me arriving in a village with only 45 locals, descendants of the Bounty mutineers.
Being the only doctor was challenging at first. But the friendliness of the islanders and the well equipped clinic made up for it. And soon I felt in my comfort zone again. There is great scenery, walks, fishing and a good house with great views.
Health improvement on the Island
I soon set up a plan to decrease morbidity issues such as diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease. And enjoyed having all facilities for point of care treatments such as x rays, ultrasound and pathology. I had to do some surgery, some mental health care, dispensing, orthopaedics and emergency care. There are no obstetrics cases here at present and one is on-call 24/7.
The nurse and I had to organise medevacs a few times to Tahiti and New Zealand, for some cases that needed urgent and elective surgery. Having no landing strip on the island, any medevacs have to go by ship.
Being a British Overseas Territory they have a health scheme that covers that. But it made me realise that first and foremost their lives depended on me and my skills.
I ended up staying for two glorious years and have now returned during COVID-19 for another 12 months. After 12 months spent on Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic (officially the most remote inhabited archipelago in the world).
It feels great to be able to use all my medical skills which we require as a rural and remote generalist. So much so I am staying for twelve months this time. We remain COVID-free and I always welcome people reaching out to find out more about the experience.
One year ago, Dr Jack already shared with us his experience as a locum doctor on Pitcairn Island. If you see yourself pitching up on a remote island in 2021 or beyond, give us a call!
02 8960 6445 or email [email protected]