The Limestone Coast could become home to up to fifty new skilled health workers, following a successful study tour of the region last week.
StudyAdelaide and Regional Development Australia teamed up to bring 50 migrant healthcare and allied health students on a study tour of the Limestone Coast, where they met with local health employers and councils in the hopes of attracting new workers to the region.
The students visited Kingston, Millicent, Mount Gambier, Naracoorte and Keith, spoke with local employers and toured local health facilities.
CEO RDA Limestone Coast David Wheaton said he was hopeful the tour would be one of many tours which are designed to attract young migrant workers to fill the many vacancies in the health industry.
"Our region needs to find 2000 workers by 2026 just to keep up with where we are up ' he said.
"With baby boomers going into retirement and young people moving away to the city, we have more jobs than we have people so we need to keep working on bringing people into the region to fill those vacancies or our industries and businesses are not working at full capacity.
"We are hearing that pretty regularly from places that would put on another shift, open longer hours if they could find the workers.
We will be tracking them all, keeping in touch with them, and there will be quite a lot of follow-up now to happen, matching up CVs with employers and that sort of thing."
According to RDA, since the first of February, there has been 3398 jobs advertised in the Limestone Coast, with 714 in the health or allied health industry, from a total of 529 advertisements.
Public health masters student Maria Hasan said she had enjoyed her time in the region and would look to move here permanently.
"I have been here before as a tourist, and I thought it was very small and there wasn't much here, but coming on this trip has really changed my perspective," she said.
"I told my husband 'You need to come back and see what I've seen'
"This trip has really changed my perspective - personally I didn't think there were opportunities here, but I have to admit I was wrong."
Communications and Engagement manager of StudyAdelaide Jodie McDonald said some students had already fallen in love with the area and planned to return.
"There's a lot of excitement and a lot of talk about opportunities and a willingness to explore it further," she said.
"There are a couple that have already made up their mind that they are moving.
"It has been overwhelmingly positive."