Around 150 new graduate registered nurses have joined Gold Coast hospitals this year as part of a record intake of graduate nurses.
Minister for Health and Ambulance Services Cameron Dick said the Palaszczuk Government was steaming ahead with implementing its election commitment to employ 4000 nurse graduates – Queensland’s biggest nurse graduate recruitment campaign.
“We are investing more than $110 million into this important initiative to revitalise our nursing workforce statewide, with up to 1000 additional nurse graduates to be injected into Queensland’s Hospital and Health Services every year for four years,” he said.
“We are well on our way to delivering on that commitment, with every single nurse who graduated from a Queensland university in 2015 offered a place in Queensland Health.
“These graduate nurses have joined a system of about 36,000 nurses who are vital to delivering high-quality health care.
“With legislated safe nurse-to-patient ratios being introduced from 1 July, the Palaszczuk Government is making it clear to these graduates that, more than ever, we value Queensland’s nurses.”
The Gold Coast is just one of many regions welcoming fresh faces to their nursing staff, with more than 2000 nurse graduates employed across Queensland since February 2015.
The Minister today visited Robina Hospital, where he met with some of the hospital’s 53 graduate registered nurses to see for himself some of the educational initiatives in place to benefit graduates.
“These graduates are receiving three months of focused support at the start of their transition year,” he said.
“In addition to the clinical teams in their units, they also have access to an Entry to Practice team of facilitators to enhance their development and confidence, which is an invaluable resource at this stage of their careers.
“This commitment to the training and education of the next wave of nurses on the ever-growing Gold Coast is essential as we work towards developing the nursing workforce of the future in Queensland.”
Gold Coast Health Nursing/Midwifery Education and Research Unit Director of Nursing Susanne Pearce said the service had invested in resources such as simulation technologies to enhance the development of graduate nurses’ confidence in their clinical practices.
“Those facilities, including the Bond Clinical Education and Research Centre here at Robina Hospital, allow us to deliver innovative scenarios such as recognising and responding to clinical deterioration using high-tech mannequins,” she said.
Gold Coast Health’s graduate registered nurses work across various areas of the health service including surgical, rehabilitation, perioperative, palliative care, dialysis and mental health.
Nurse graduate Carly Youseff, who is based in the Robina Hospital Emergency Department, said she had been impressed by the health service’s commitment to education.
“It’s always a little nerve-racking starting out in your career and that’s why it’s been reassuring to know that so much attention and energy is directed at our ongoing development,” she said.