THE long wait for the National Broadband Network (NBN) in Orange may be a hurdle for establishing Charles Sturt University’s (CSU) medical school.
The school’s advocate professor John Dwyer said he was disappointed Orange was left out of the three-year rollout announced last week.
He said the group pushing for the facility to train doctors for regional areas had been hoping to begin research into the best ways to use the NBN for people in regional and remote communities.
“One of the things in our proposal to the government we’ve recognised is the fact that national broadband will be an incredibly useful tool,” he said.
“We were hoping Orange would get it sooner than that so we could start working on this important research project.
“If we don’t get it [the NBN] within six to seven years that would be a major blow.”
Professor Dwyer said the technology had the potential for general practitioners in small towns to connect with the university for ongoing education.
It could also be used for long distance medical consultations, but further research was essential for doctors and patients to become familiar with the technology.
Professor Dwyer said he hoped lobbying to see Orange included in the second round of the NBN rollout would continue as existing facilities like the dental school and universities that use Orange hospital for training would take advantage of the technology.
“I want to make sure whoever makes those doors in Canberra open understands that in terms of rolling it out in rural areas Orange would have a very strong case,” he said.