Four nurses with more than 70 years’ experience combined have been recognised today as part of the Mackay Hospital and Health Service International Nurses Day award celebrations.
2020 Year of the Nurse and Midwife Award winner Amanda Cowan spends her days as a Clinical Nurse in Telehealth for Whitsunday Health Service. She has been at Proserpine Hospital for many years armed with a valuable skill set across all areas of the rural environment. Her knowledge and commitment to improving the health of her community shows in the success of the telehealth service she helped establish in the Whitsundays.
McFadzen Award winner Lisa Byrne has been described as a true nurse who is selfless and compassionate. She is an educator across Mackay Base Hospital medical F2 and F0 wards helping new nurses develop clinical skills, while showing kindness and care to patients.
Nurse Specialty Award winner Susanne Murray has been nursing for 50 years, with the last 12 years at Sarina Hospital as a rural generalist nurse. In her spare time Sue actively gives to many worthwhile causes, volunteering as a nurse in Nepal, Cambodia and Papua New Guinea. She is also a licensed x-ray operator.
CQUniversity 2019 Graduate of the Year winner Stephen Minger may be at the start of his career but has already shown he is a proactive and positive team player who is always delivering high-quality care. Stephen has already secured a position post graduate year due to his constant demonstration of high-quality care.
Mackay Hospital and Health Service Chief Executive Jo Whitehead said the health service was honoured to put a spotlight on the work done by nurses especially during these unprecedented times.
“The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic just highlights how important our nurses are in protecting the health of our patients and broader community,” she said.
“With more than 1,200 nurses working across the health service they provide care in a range of settings from in our hospitals and community health facilities to working out in the field in public health.
“This annual awards ceremony is our way of offering nurses a heartfelt thanks for all that they do.”
Executive Director of Nursing and Midwifery Julie Rampton said often a thankless job, nurses left a lifelong impression on their patients and families.
“Nurses are often the first person a patient meets when coming to our facilities and the last they see before going home,” she said.
“They are teachers, advocates, caregivers, problem solvers and innovators. Nursing is a true calling and the heart and soul of our healthcare system.”
The World Health Organisation has designated 2020 as Year of the Nurse and Midwife, recognising the vital role of nurses in transforming healthcare around the world. It also is in honour of the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth.
Each year, Mackay Hospital and Health Service marks International Nurses Day (12 May) with an awards presentation that this year will be delivered via Video Conference due to social distancing measures.