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Ayr and Home Hill Health Service celebrate more than 400 years of dedication

21 November

Thirty staff members from across the Ayr and Home Hill Health Service celebrated 433 years of service at the annual length-of-service awards on Wednesday.

The awards aimed to thank staff for their continued support to the community and the health service.

Home Hill Health Service aid in nursing Kathleen Cross said she is thankful she could pursue a career caring for the locals she’s grown up with.

“I’m a born and bred local so I have the ability to build that special connection with my patients because I’ve grown up around them some have even looked after me when I was a baby,” Kathleen said.

“My first week walking through the wards I saw an elderly patient who had looked after me when I was still in nappies and when I said hello she still remembered me which was really special.

“One big aspect that stands out here is that when we make a suggestion it’s listened to and they either implement it or do their very best to put it in place, so you always feel like you’re being listened to.”

Ayr Health Service also celebrated their length-of-service awards on Wednesday, with executive assistant Ana Mooney saying that a lot had changed in her more than 40 years of service.

“When I first started we only had one car and on pay days you would go to the bank and sit between a police officer and hospital manager to get cash for pays. Staff would have to come to the admin office, sign and collect their pays while the police officer stood guard,” Ana said.

“We also had a telex machine for urgent drug orders and then along came the photocopier, which was huge yet could only copy one sheet at a time.

“I also clearly remember the day our first computer arrived; everyone was petrified of it because nobody knew what it was for and what to do with it, so it’s been really interesting to see technology has changed.

“That’s just the way it was back then and sometimes we forget about how far we’ve come, but it’s nice to sit back and reminisce.”

Despite the array of changes, Ana said there’s no other place she’d rather be.

“We are very fortunate to be part of Queensland Health as although huge, it’s also very obvious that the clinical staff are all caring and professional,” Ana said.

“I always think to myself, ‘Ayr is not too big, not too small and it’s busy, so everyone gets in and works hard’.

“When you have a good work environment with good people, the patients feel that, they feel more comfortable and that’s what I have really enjoyed.”

Townsville Hospital and Health Service Board Chair Tony Mooney said he appreciated the hard work put in by staff at Ayr and Home Hill Health Service and congratulated all length-of-service staff on their achievements.

“Whether it’s five years or thirty-five years, these length of service awards are our way of saying thank you to the staff who have put immense time and effort into making our community better,” Mr Mooney said.

“We really appreciate how hard each and every staff member here works and these awards are a way of recognising that effort.

“It’s also really humbling knowing that the next generation of health workers will receive this wonderful wealth of knowledge from their predecessors.”

Last updated: 20 December 2018