Celebrating and supporting our Nurses and Midwives
This month we will celebrate our Nurses on International Nurses Day on 12 May and our Midwives on International Day of the Midwife on 5 May – this week in Parliament I will be bringing the attention of the House to the ongoing pressure they are under to deliver high quality health care in the bush when the system is working against them.
Our nurses and midwives are being called upon to do more and more in our small rural facilities. As one nurse has put to me they’re working at the top of their clinical scope. She said: we’re placing ourselves at risk by pushing the limit of our clinical scope. But when you’re in a small facility you have no Doctor on shift or on call and the nearest major hospital is hundreds of kilometres away it comes back to you. And the people we are treating aren’t strangers to us, they’re our friend’s parents, kids from the same school my kids go to. They’re people that we know and they’re looking to us in their time of need.
It is through the goodwill of our local nurses that our health system has been able to function in the bush. Our local nurses have been there for communities through locum doctor after locum doctor, through periods of no doctor, through periods of over reliance on telehealth. They’re the people who are going to tell you you’re going to be looked after and will make sure you’re ok.
To our Nurses and Midwives please be assured that we all have you back, not just on you International Days but every day, and I’m fighting to get you greater support.