Nurse and midwife programs at GV Health
Published at: 31 Jan 2020
Midwives on the job at GV Health
WITH THE NEW YEAR WELL UNDERWAY, GOULBURN VALLEY HEALTH HAS HAD AN IMPRESSIVE INTAKE OF POSTGRADUATE NURSES AND MIDWIVES, TOGETHER WITH THOSE COMPLETING THEIR GRADUATE YEARS.
Goulburn Valley Health’s nursing numbers have grown with several nurse and midwifery graduates starting new positions this month.
Among the newly appointed staff are also post-graduate and undergraduate students, completing their on-the-job training at GV Health.
GV Health’s Maternity Services clinical area educator Sarah Quick said each year GV Health took on five or six midwifery graduates and this year the health service also took on six post-graduate midwives.
Among the graduates was Melissa Stedman who completed her nursing graduate year at GV Health before going on to do a post-graduate Diploma in Midwifery.
Ms Stedman said after completing Year 12 at Wanganui Park Secondary College she went on to study enrolled nursing at GoTafe.
“After six months I could work in aged care, so I did that for a year,” she said.
After finishing the course, Ms Stedman worked for a year while completing a Bachelor of Nursing.
Already completing her graduate year of nursing at GV Health, Ms Stedman is now completing a six-month graduate period at GV Health for midwifery.
“I’d always wanted to do nursing; my grandma was a nurse and I’ve always loved caring for people,” she said.
Ms Quick said there were a few different pathways to becoming a midwife.
She said students could either complete a three-year Bachelor of Midwifery which enables direct entry into the profession or they could undertake a four-year double degree in Nursing and Midwifery.
Ms Quick said post-graduate midwifery was a program for qualified nurses who decided to take up extra study through La Trobe University, which was the pathway Ms Stedman took.
“(We provide) mainly on-the-job training with blocks at university,” she said.
Ms Stedman said one of the great things about training at GV Health was the ability to work across all sectors of midwifery from antenatal care right through to the lactation clinic.
“It’s got a wide variety of everything compared to metropolitan hospitals where you’re in the one unit,” she said.
“At GV Health, because we don’t have specialised units, you get to see a wide variety of patients.”
Ms Quick said these postgraduate midwives were supported with clinical staff.
“Our midwives are an amazing support to all of our students rotating through,” she said.
“We have two clinical educators for midwifery, and we rotate (postgraduates) through all areas of midwifery including community placements, our antenatal clinic, birth suite, and postnatal ward.
“(We also take them through) our domiciliary and breast-feeding support service as well as attending caesarean section births.”
Ms Stedman said the support she had received had been fantastic.
“Sarah Quick is very approachable which is great and there’s lot of amazing midwifery staff,” she said.
Ms Quick said the health service would take between 20 and 30 undergraduate students throughout the year as well.
Largest registered nurse cohort to date
GV Health will take on its largest cohort of graduate registered nurses this year.
GV Health’s Graduate Nurse Program co-ordinator Kate Moroney said a group of 25 registered nurses began at the health service this week and a further 25 would begin in February.
“The graduate nurses are all registered and are transitioning from university to the work environment,” she said.
“Some people are moving back to the region as well after studying away.” Ms Moroney said the program ran for one year with registered nurses having graduated from a variety of universities.
“The graduate nurse program draws registered nurses to our region,” Ms Moroney said.
She said the reason behind taking on the largest cohort to date was a result of GV Health’s redevelopment which has increased the need for more nursing staff.
The first group of nurses began orientation this week and Ms Moroney said they would go on to work in different areas across the health service, supported by clinical educators.
Transition program evolves
The Enrolled Nurse Transition program at GV Health has this year received a shake-up.
GV Health’s Transition to Practice co-ordinator Lyn Brett said the program had been modified so GV Health can have an ongoing intake of enrolled nurses rather than specific intakes.
She said this year there would be 14 enrolled nurse graduates taking up the program at GV Health.
“(It) is a flexible six-month program to support newly registered enrolled nurses to make the transition from the student role to that of a junior nurse in the clinical areas,” she said.
“The program has two professional development days to assist the nurse with the consolidation of theory to practice with a focus on continued skill development.
“The ENs are also supported by the clinical area educators in each clinical area and enrolled nurse mentors.”
Ms Brett explained the difference between an enrolled nurse and a registered nurse.
“ENs complete their training through Tafe over 18 to 24 months,” she said.
“RNs complete their training through university for three years.
“You can get credit as an EN into the RN course.”
Sophie Ferguson and Tori Sinclair began the program about three weeks ago and said they had been enjoying their time at GV Health after both growing up in the Goulburn Valley.
Ms Brett said more information about the program was available by contacting her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org