Twenty six new nurses will continue their nursing career in the Territory after graduating from the Top End Health Service Graduate Nurse Program.
The Graduate Nurse Program supports nurses during the transition from university to employment.
The 12 month clinical placement develops skills and knowledge with support from mentors and senior staff in a range of fields, including mental health, primary health care and acute care at Royal Darwin Hospital, Katherine Hospital and Gove District Hospital.
Marrianne Holden graduated from the program earlier this year and said Katherine Hospital was her first choice – it is where she thought she could make the biggest difference.
Now a registered nurse, working in the Katherine Hospital pediatrics ward, Mrs Holden said the support during the graduate program was second to none.
“The program built foundation and gave me confidence. I realise now how much I learnt,” she said.
“Whereas I have heard of extremely heavy case loads in other grad programs, here they are more evenly distributed. They ease you into it.
“Here, (managers) realise things can go south real quick and they care about their patients.”
Top End Health Service’s director of clinical learning education and research, Carole Maddison said the health service was pleased to see 26 of the 27 participants continue their nursing employment across the Territory.
“This is a great outcome for our health service,” she said.
“We are boosting our workforce with staff who have had practical experience on the ground with the support from senior staff and mentors.
“Graduates complete their rotations in various roles across the health service, including at our three hospitals, primary health care centres and within the Top End Mental Health Service. The graduates gain a comprehensive understanding of how our health service works and a head start for their future employment here.
“We have some great opportunities on offer for nurses here in the Territory, including our unique patient profile and a vast range of infectious and tropical diseases. Graduates from interstate often want to move up here to get exposure to clinical scenarios they may not see interstate.”
The program was developed to make sure the Territory sees quality nurses in hospitals, and has seen a high number of nurses secure ongoing employment after the program.
Following the success of Mrs Holden’s experience during the grad program, she said that people interested should “go for it”.
“Katherine is such a diverse place. Everything you see is so different. If you can get into a grad program, especially in Katherine, it is so worth it.
“If there is something you havn’t done make sure you put your hand up to volunteer because the RNs here want you to have a go,” she said.
The next round of graduates commenced in mid-April and will continue on rotation until early next year.
If you think the Nurse Graduate Program is for you, recruitment for the next intake will commence in May 2018.
For more information visit the website here.
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