Hospitals in St George and Sutherland Shire have welcomed new interns who will serve as junior medical officers - marking the first stage of their medical careers.
Seventy interns spent a week at St George Hospital before they set off on their first postings.
The interns will rotate between hospitals in the area and a regional posting, where they will do 10 to 12-week compulsory stints in medicine, surgery and emergency medical care, as well as general practice.
There are 18 intern positions at Sutherland Hospital, 48 in St George Hospital, two in Calvary Health Care Kogarah and two in Griffith, in the state's Riverina region.
They are among a record 1041 new interns who started work in NSW public hospitals this year, up from 1027 last year and an increase of 35 per cent since 2011.
Sutherland Hospital general manager Vicki Weeden congratulated the new doctors.
"We are very excited to welcome our new interns to the team at Sutherland Hospital and wish them great success as they work to help our patients and local community," she said.
St George Hospital general manager Paul Darcy also welcomed the new interns.
"Junior doctors play such an important role at St George Hospital as frontline healthcare workers and I'm sure they are excited to learn from the world-class doctors and mentors we have here at the hospital," Mr Darcy said.
NSW Health's acting deputy secretary Richard Griffiths said the junior medical officers were starting their career "at a remarkable time in our history".
"They come to us in the middle of an unprecedented, worldwide pandemic and have the unique opportunity to play a vital role in our extraordinary health system," he said.
State MP's Mark Speakman (Cronulla), Eleni Petinos (Miranda) and Lee Evans (Heathcote) welcomed the new interns.
"We welcome the 18 intern doctors to Sutherland Hospital and thank them for the care they will provide to our community," Ms Petinos said.
"The new doctors who have started their internships will be entering a training program with networked hospitals throughout the state," Mr Speakman said.
"I commend the interns for their hard work and dedication, and wish them all the best for their training program," Mr Evans said.
Interns are medical graduates who have completed their medical degree. They are required to complete a supervised year of practice in order to become independent practitioners.
The new doctors will enter a training program with networked hospitals throughout the state, providing formal and on-the-job training.
During their two-year contracts, they rotate between metropolitan, regional and rural hospitals to ensure diversity of experience.
The NSW Government is investing $2.8 billion over four years in a record workforce boost of 8300 frontline hospital staff, including 5000 nurses and midwives, with 45 per cent of those for regional and rural areas.
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