STUDENT doctors, nurses and paramedics are being trained on-site at Launceston's Masonic Peace Haven at their own university campus in an Australian-first aged care teaching program.
Masonic Peace Haven chief executive Marlene Johnston said that the unique, 12-month-old program would be officially opened by the federal Health and Ageing Minister Mark Butler tomorrow while he is in Launceston for the community cabinet led by Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
``The program is going very well - it has had two evaluations so far and people have been blown away by how effective it has been for students,'' Ms Johnston said.
``Our staff too have been well trained.''
Ms Johnston hopes that the training program site, run in partnership with the University of Tasmania's Wicking Centre will be formerly recognised as a teaching facility after Mr Butler's visit.
Three blocks of students have been through the program in its first 12 months.
It has consisted of on-the-job training at Masonic Peace Haven sites under the mentorship of senior nurses as well as lectures at the new university learning centre set up at the aged care facility's Fred French campus.
Ms Johnston said that it was the first time that student nurses, paramedics and doctors had been brought together to be trained in aged care.
She said that there had been a great deal of interest from around Australia in the pilot project.
``At long last there has been a move to put aged care in perspective in the community instead of it being regarded as a third-rate industry,'' she said.