New doctor moves family to Cobar for the lifestyle

The Cobar Primary Health Care Centre was pleased to welcome new doctor, Dr Kula Baravilala to the surgery last week. Dr Kula was very happy to make the move to Cobar and said one of the main reasons for moving was for a positive lifestyle change. Living in Cobar means both she and her husband can pursue their chosen careers, but also be home each night to share dinner with their young children.

Cobar’s new doctor to town, Dr Kula Baravilala has cited “a positive lifestyle change” as her incentive for moving to Co-bar.
Dr Kula moved from Cairns to Cobar last week to take up a GP’s position at the Cobar Primary Health Care Centre, along with her husband Sam, who is working at one of the local mines.
And while they are now 10 hours from the beach rather than just 10 minutes, Dr Kula said she definitely won’t miss the humidity of tropi-cal North Queensland.
“We did a short visit to Cobar in January and it was the middle of summer and not sweaty.
“It’s hot, but it’s not sweaty!
“That was a selling point, I loved it!
The couple’s 19 month old toddler and seven month old baby will be joining them soon along with Dr Kula’s aunt who is helping to care for the children.
Dr Kula said the move to Cobar means both she and her husband can continue working in their chosen careers and go home each night to cook dinner and be with their young children.
“It’s actually the first place we have both moved to since we got married, where we are both driving distance from work, because Sam has done FIFO (Fly In/Fly Out) for the last four or five years.”
Dr Kula completed her medical training at Fiji’s School of Medicine in Suva and after graduating she went on to do an internship which involved work in a broad range of fields including obstetrics, gynecology, pediatrics, orthopedic and general surgery.
She was then posted to a clinic where she worked as the equivalent of a GP.
“In Fiji, you become basically the jack of all trades,” Dr Kula explained.
“You go in the morning and you do ward rounds and you could deliver a baby.
“And then after all that, you go to the clinic and you could see all the general outpatients or you could see all the pregnant women and the next day you’ll do the diabetic clinic.
“And then after that, you can go and deliver the second baby and then do the evening ward rounds and be on call. It’s so versatile.”
In 2014 Dr Kula moved to Australia and underwent her qualifying exams with the Aus-tralian Medical Council, and later worked for two years in a hospital emergency department in Sale, Victoria.
She then moved to Cairns where she’s worked as a ward doctor for the past three years in a private hospital.
Both postings have added to her wide variety of experience and have boded well for her transfer to work as a GP in Cobar.
Dr Kula said she has a special interest in pediatrics.
“I like kids and women’s health also interests me,” she said.
And when asked what are her interests out-side of work, she responded: “Now that I’m a mum, that’s my free time—laundry, cleaning and picking stuff up off the floor, and basical-ly just spending time with the kids.
“I’m hoping we can do some camping and maybe have a few barbecues,” she said.
“I look forward to meeting people and I hope I can be of service.”
While Dr Kula is used to working in busy hospital emergency departments, she’s found her first few days working as a GP (and sit-ting at a desk) a bit of an adjustment.
“I feel like I’m being spoiled and I feel bad,” she said.
Dr Kula was however pleased with the warm reception she’s received from the staff at the centre along with the patients she’s seen in her first week working as a Cobar GP.
Cobar Primary Health Care Centre Practice Manager Tarun Bheemireddy said it had taken them almost five years to secure a female, Cobar-based GP and they were very pleased to be able to welcome Dr Kula to the team.