Madeleine Rodwell
Madeleine Rodwell

Madeleine Rodwell

Rotary Club of Sale
Rural Nursing Scholarship 2023

Federation University, Gippsland Campus, Vic

Final Rural Placement – Bairnsdale Regional Health Service
Post Grad Placement – Central Gippsland Health Service (Sale)

Rural Nursing Scholarship Program

Why do I wish to do rural and remote training?

Having lived my whole life in the East Gippsland area, I have always been heavily involved in my local community.   So, beginning my nursing career at Central Gippsland Health Service (Sale) hospital was a simple choice.   Remaining local provides me with the opportunity to give back to that community and the people that have supported me.   Growing up on a local farming property, I feel that I have a special understanding of the issues facing rural communities in accessing health care.   This will allow me to utilise my skills to provide appropriate nursing care beneficial to the health of this population.  I have many family members who still live locally, including elderly grandparents.   The barriers facing elderly people accessing healthcare in rural areas is significant, and by remaining local in my nursing career, I will be better able to help support their needs as they continue to age.   I have always seen myself living in this area and making a life for myself within this community, so choosing Sale Hospital is a long-term career choice and not just a temporary step.   During my allocated placements I have spent the majority of time in rural hospitals.   In this time, I have seen firsthand the crisis surrounding the lack of nursing staff that many rural hospitals are facing.   Therefore, by joining the workforce, I hope to help alleviate the strain that is being place d on rural nurses.  Recruitment is also difficult i rural areas which emphasises the importance of graduate nurses to join their local rural hospital and support their communities.

… As I have mentioned I am hoping to go on and commence further study after completing my graduate year with Central Gippsland Health.   Undertaking a postgraduate certificate in either emergency or theatre nursing is my current passion.   However, during my nursing placement I thoroughly enjoyed all the acute and subacute areas that I worked within.   It is this fact that I am most looking forward to my graduate year, in the hopes that one specific area will grab my attention.

Final (University) Rural Report

I completed my final nursing placement at Bairnsdale Regional Health Service (BRHS) at the end of 2022. This was a fantastic final placement experience before commencing work as a registered nurse. The third-year nursing students were provided the opportunity to experience a variety of different specialty areas. For myself, this meant that I was able to experience the dialysis ward, high dependency unit and perioperative department during my time at BRHS.

These allocations saw me spending my first week in Renal Dialysis where I gained further insight into the renal system and the mechanics behind how the machines dialyses each individual patient’s blood. After this week I then moved to the High Dependency Unit. I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent in this department, learning from the highly skilled and knowledgeable nursing staff. However, my time here highlighted the significant challenges facing rural hospitals and staffing. Unfortunately, the staffing issues faced by this ward meant that the higher acuity patients were unable to be properly cared for and had to be transported to other hospitals.  Therefore, I did not get the opportunity to actively care for the more acutely unwell patients. However, this provided me with more time to engage with my mentors and fully utilise their extensive critical care knowledge.

The highlight of my placement was my time spent in the Perioperative Department. I always knew that I had an interest in this field and the perioperative journey, but it was the two weeks that I spent in this area that really confirmed my passion for perioperative nursing. I was surprised by the strong bond that was evident between the nursing staff, anaesthetists and the surgeons. Airway management, I learnt was a significant part of caring for people recovering from anaesthesia. Overall, I was drawn to the surgical operations and the nursing care required for post anaesthetic  recovery.

I thoroughly enjoyed this placement and the variety of nursing specialties that we were allowed to experience. I found this particularly useful for myself in helping to narrow down the type of nursing field that I wanted to explore further and potentially specialise in in the future. I am excited to begin my graduate year at Central Gippsland Health commencing in the perioperative department.

Post Grad Rural Placement Report

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