Rotary Club of Sale
Rural Nursing Scholarship 2018/19
Federation University, Gippsland Campus, Vic
Final Rural Placement – Bairnsdale Regional Health Centre
Post Grad Placement – Bairnsdale Regional Health Centre
Why do I wish to do rural and remote training?
I have grown up within Bairnsdale and surrounding areas, and from a young age have had the opportunity to observe how important a rural hospital, such as Bairnsdale Regional Health service (BRHS) is to the community, through the hard work my mother put into nursing the community. The hospital Ensures that the communities needs are met, allowing the residents within the surrounding area to utilise this service to provide care that can allow them to lead a healthy enjoyable lifestyle. Having this experience of being involved in the community, which has had a reliance on these services, has given me the passion to seek a career at a rural hospital to utilise my skills and dedication to better my community.
My dedication to work at BRHS was strongly reinforced by completing my final year of student nursing placements working between the acute wards at the hospital. During my placements I found that the staff and the hospital as a whole were incredibly supportive towards my needs and my overall education towards becoming a better registered nurse. Furthermore these placements allowed me to witness how vital the hospitals role has become within the community, showing a strong push towards making sure all care provided is centred towards the patient, ensuring that they are involved every step of the way towards bettering their future. This shows just how dedicated these rural hospitals are towards improving the communities overall health in a way that also suits each individual’s beliefs, needs and resulting lifestyle. Due to this experience on placement, I’m strongly looking forward to being part of the BRHS team, and having the experience to work within this great organisation to develop new policies and skills to better the communities’ ongoing future.
One experience I noted on my placement at BRHS is how effective facilities including dialysis and oncology are towards the community. These wards have allowed patients to meet their needs for a healthier lifestyle, while cutting down the large travel times to the city that would have been required if these rural hospitals hadn’t developed facilities to meet their client’s needs. Furthermore BRHS has dedicated themselves to bettering their care and ensuring that the information and education they provide to the community can help inform the community towards making smarter choices for their health.
Overall I am incredibly excited towards starting my new career as a graduate at BRHS, and am looking forward to utilising my skills and knowledge that Federation University and Bairnsdale Regional Health Service has helped me to develop. I am looking forward to my nursing career, and understand it will be a challenging journey, in which I hope to continue my education development and skill set to provide the best health benefits I can towards my rural community.
Final (University) Rural Report
My last major placement, completed whilst attending Federation University, was a six week unit at Bairnsdale Regional Health Service (BRHS). Within these six weeks at the hospital I learnt a lot, tying my nursing skills together, based around getting a patient more involved in their care, and organising services for the patient at not just the hospital but for after discharge as well. By the end of my first week at Tambo ward (the new super ward at BRHS), my preceptor had started helping to develop my skills towards taking a full patient load and speeding up and prioritising my skill set.
I still remember first entering Tambo ward and having to orientate myself to the new ward, the layout was completely different to any other ward I have had placement at before, with equipment spread out in multiple rooms that only staff had entry to. This made my time management more challenging, and required me to take key opportunities when staff could let me in to learn where everything was and ensure I could find things quickly. By the end of my fourth week at Tambo ward I had orientated myself nicely to where everything was and thanks to the support of the amazing staff within this ward, I had drastically increased how efficiently and effectively I could manage my patients, and had realised the importance of ensuring I am fully orientated to a ward to effectively perform my role as a nurse.
After my four weeks at Tambo ward I was rotated into Medical imaging, then Dialysis, these wards gave me an opportunity to improve on my medical education. I was given the opportunity to sit in on different types of X-rays and Ct scans, observing what must be done, assisting and observing and learning to understand certain results. I also had the opportunity to observe some MRI patients, and found the ability to observe the anatomical structure of organs in a 3D sense, gave me a great opportunity to better orientate myself around the body. Medical imaging really opened my eyes towards how different each ward can be, having multiple different patients throughout the day and having to race from one room to set up, to the next throughout the day, it was a real eye opener to see how the hospital functions in different ways.
My final week of placement was in the dialysis ward which was the most unique ward I have been in at the hospital, in regards to the equipment used and how things are done. The patients were so regular that they basically got themselves set up and ready to go without a prompt, they joked around and had fun with staff, which was great to see the staff have such a professionally inviting and friendly relationship with these patients. By the end of this placement I had also experienced the negatives to such a positive workforce, with a death of a patient that left all of the staff quite confronted and saddened. This by far was one of the harder things for me to observe as a student, I have been around many deaths, but never one that a nurse had gotten this close to. This was the point that I realised what an emotionally hard and challenging job nursing is and how much respect I have for all hospital staff.
By the end of my placement I had received my graduate offer from BRHS which was incredibly exciting for me, I had also learnt to improve on my skills and broaden my scope of practice to better the patients that I will care for within the future. Overall this placement was a major eye opener for me, showing just how much work and planning goes in behind the scenes, and how dedicated the staff are to their patients. I look forward to working for BRHS and having as much pride in my work as the nursing staff have demonstrated to me during my placement.
Post Grad Rural Placement Report
I have done my 6-month rotation on Tambo ward, and have had the experience to learn many new things, the staff have also directed me to courses and study to better my education in areas that can help me develop, which has really helped me with my nursing. I found my placement within the cardiac/surgical ward to be a great learning area and found the staff very supportive, and understanding of how difficult it can be to start out. One interesting experience I had on Tambo ward which felt strange as well, was having next year’s graduates start while I was there and being their nurse to show them around on their super numeri days, being the previous graduate and now seeing and showing the next group around was overall interesting. Since then I went on to have 2 weeks holidays which unfortunately but understandably due to the bushfires caused majority of events and my plans to be cancelled, which gave me time to sort out my house and garden which was in desperate need of weeding and general clean up.
I have recently received a new contract for a Transition year at BRHS for 6 months in oncology and then 6 months in Tambo ward again, it is nice to know that I have continued guaranteed shifts as with recent news myself and my wife have found out we will be having a baby this year which is very exciting but brings in its own new set of stressors. Therefore, we have already taken the time to set up a baby’s room and start getting on top of things before it gets out of hand.
I have since moved on to my oncology rotation, and have found the whole ward to feel like I’m coming in as a student all over again, very little is similar to the wards and I have recently had to complete large amounts of study and practical skills to be able to actually perform the regular tasks within the unit. I have started to settle down in the unit now, and although still slow with many tasks am starting to get used to the new flow of the shifts and planning of my days. One good thing that oncology does is every 12 months they must have a cytotoxic check up with a GP to make sure there isn’t any issues to staff from handling chemo even through strict precautions. I look forward to working towards this year and continuing on with my nursing and working towards further education and development of my nursing portfolio.