Monday, 1 February 2016

Shepparton student takes year out for Bendigo research project

A former Shepparton student has his sights set on a medical career and the Monash Rural Health is helping him realise his dreams.

Taking a break from his medical studies, Dan Hogarty is looking forward to being part of a local research project in Bendigo this year.

Dan and fellow student with Monash Rural Health, Nic Dewhurst, will be working with Bendigo ophthalmologist Dr Peter Burt on a project around the intraocular lens. They will resume their fourth and fifth years of study after that.

“I definitely haven’t decided what I will specialise in yet but have a strong interest in ophthalmology,” Dan said. An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who specialises in eye and vision care.

“This will be my research year and it is a great opportunity to work with Dr Burt and Nic on comparing the effectiveness of the new and current intraocular lens,” Dan added.

Intraocular lens(IOL) are implanted in the eye used to treat cataracts or myopia. The most common type of IOL is the pseudophakic IOL which is implanted during cataract surgery.

Born in Shepparton, Dan’s interest in studying medicine grew stronger in his senior years at Shepparton's Notre Dame College. “I have always had a logical mind and biology was one of my favourite subjects so it was a natural fit,” he said.

“I researched the best courses and [the Monash course] stood out for me as being from a regional area, I really jumped at the chance to study medicine rurally.”

As part of the Extended Rural Cohort program, Dan completed his first two years of medicine at Monash University's Clayton campus before spending this third year with Monash Rural Health in Bendigo. His fourth and fifth years will be based in Bendigo too.

Dan’s third year was busy but “rewarding”.

“You really learn how the hospital (Bendigo Health) works and after two years of a lot of theory, you really feel part of the health system and get exposed to a range of hands-on experiences,” he said.

When Dan decided to become a doctor, his Shepparton parents and Tatura grandparents were naturally “very proud”.

Now they have a double reason to celebrate as Dan’s younger brother, Joseph, made the same career choice and is currently in his first year of medicine at Monash University Clayton.

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