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8 new nurse graduates join Central West Health

Tuesday 2 February 2021

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Eight new nurse graduates started their careers with the Central West Hospital and Health Service this week.

Central West Health Executive Director of Nursing and Midwifery Services Danielle Causer said the health service also expected to take a further eight graduates in its July intake, as in previous years.

Ms Causer said the Central West increasingly was being regarded as an attractive area for new nurses and midwives to launch their careers.

This year’s first eight graduate nurses will be allocated initially to Longreach and Blackall hospitals as well as to the Winton and Barcaldine multipurpose health services.

“Graduates will work in the clinical areas of acute medical, surgical, emergency, community and primary health and support the hospital-based ambulance,’’ Ms Causer said.

“After six months at their initial location, they will then have the opportunity to work in another facility.

“They will be able to learn on the job and translate the skills they’ve learnt at university into better outcomes for patients across our region.’’

Assistant Minister for Health and Regional Health Infrastructure Julieanne Gilbert has welcomed the graduates.

“It’s an exciting day to be welcoming eight new nurse graduates to the region,” Mrs Gilbert said.

“They are joining the local health system during a global pandemic to provide the best care for our community.

“They have undertaken years of study, and I’m sure that they will enjoy rewarding careers.

“I know these new nurse graduates have worked incredibly hard to get to this point and are now taking the next big steps in their careers.

“Since last year, we have faced huge challenges with the global coronavirus health pandemic, and it’s incredibly clear just how essential it is to invest in the next generation of healthcare workers.”


Barcaldine resident Kate Whelan is one of the new nurse graduates starting work with the health service this week.

Born in Longreach, Ms Whelan moved to Barcaldine two years ago and has been working locally, including at the Catholic primary school, while completing her nursing degree externally with Central Queensland University in Rockhampton.

“As a child, I spent a lot of time in hospital and that’s what first prompted me to think about a career in nursing,’’ Ms Whelan said.

“I was always tossing up between nursing and teaching but always came back to nursing.

“I like to help people and make their lives better and I’m really looking forward to working as a nurse for my community in Barcaldine and the surrounding area.’’

Blackall Hospital-bound new nurse Moriah Bell is from Townsville originally but has been living on the Sunshine Coast.

She did her nursing degree through Central Queensland University and is keen to start her career in Blackall and work in a brand-new hospital.

“I’ve always wanted to work in a country area because rural nursing offers such a wide diversity of experiences and opportunities to build my skills,’’ she said.
“It’s a very exciting time for me and I’m looking forward to getting to know the Blackall community and the new hospital.’’

Hervey Bay resident Paul Bryant is another of the Central West’s new nurses and will be going to Longreach Hospital first and then rotating to Winton.

Mr Bryant did his degree with the University of the Sunshine Coast as a mature age student following a previous career that included eight years’ service in the Royal Australian Air Force.

“I was working in aged care and that’s what prompted my interest in becoming a nurse,’’ Mr Bryant said.

“I was also keen on working in a rural area because I was born and raised in Bathurst in New South Wales and was used to life in a country area.

“I chose the Central West because you can get a better all-round learning experience in a rural or regional setting and I like living in a smaller country town.’’

Ms Causer said Central West Health was very excited to welcome the new graduates as they began their careers.

“As a health service, we are committed to providing training opportunities for graduate nurses, as well as midwives.

“They are an important part of our team, and we value the contribution they will make.’’

Ms Causer said the 12-month graduate transition program for new nurses and midwives involved theoretical and practical assessments.

“Graduate nurses and midwives are provided support and mentorship by experienced staff to help make the transition from studying at university to life in the workforce,’’ she said.

“They have chosen a rewarding and fulfilling profession that provides many pathways for career development and is a fabulous way of serving the community in which we live.

“We hope their first year of practice in the Central West will open their eyes to the opportunities and diverse range of professional experiences available in our region and opt to continue their career with us in the future.’’


ENDS

For further information contact:
James Guthrie
Principal Media Officer, Rural and Remote Qld
Media and Communication
Department of Health
(07) 3708 5379
Jim.Guthrie@health.qld.gov.au

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Last updated: 3 March 2021