The Shift – Podcasts for Nurses and Midwives

The NSWNMA is proud to introduce The Shift, our new series of thought-provoking podcasts. We start our series with speakers from Professional Day. The Shift is also available on itunes.

2015 Annual Conference

2015 Annual Conference

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Posted in: Education
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My first and last cardiac arrests

Ann-Marie remembers her first cardiac arrest as a nurse. During her last arrest before retiring, she played a very different role.

The year was 1967.  I was working in the Recovery Room, which in those days consisted of a partly partitioned area at the end of the main theatre corridor. Small though it was, it was just amazing the number of trolleys that could be ‘fitted in’.  On arrival in the Recovery Room, all nurses were given an orientation and advised to pull the cord on the emergency bell if needed.

My second week began uneventfully enough. I was caring for a lady who had undergone debridement (cleaning) of diabetic leg ulcers. Her vital signs were within normal parameters, but suddenly she became unresponsive. I remember shaking her and saying “Mrs X, are you okay?” No response, so I automatically pulled the cord. The sound was deafening and looking up, I noted what seemed like thousands of people running towards me.

Broken Heart

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Posted in: Nursing experiences
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From Nightingale nurses to a modern profession

Not only was Sir Henry Parkes a Premier of NSW and one of the founders of Australian federation, he was also the man who invited nurse Lucy Osburn to come to Sydney Infirmary (now Sydney Hospital) in 1868, where she set up a Nightingale training school for nurses. So in one sense he was the instigator of the modern nursing profession in Australia.


Dr Georgina Willetts.

It’s fitting then that Parkes’ great-great-granddaughter Georgina Willetts is to deliver the 2015 Parkes Oration, in Tenterfield in the northwest of the state (inland from Lismore). Dr Willetts is currently co-ordinator of the Bachelor of Nursing at Monash University in Melbourne. She will talk on ‘From Nightingale nurses to a modern profession – the journey of nurses in Australia’. As a descendant of Parkes [he had 17 children!] as well as a distinguished nursing educator, Dr Willetts offers a unique perspective on the development and current role of our profession.

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Posted in: Events, nursing history
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Narelle retires from theatres

Narelle Wright retired from St George operating theatres in May this year after training at and working in the same hospital since 1966. Her manager Sue Davis paid tribute to Narelle at a surprise retirement celebration. 

Sunday, 24 May 2015 was the last day of work for in-charge theatre nurse Narelle Wright at St George Hospital, Kogarah (southern Sydney). Narelle was an integral part of the theatre team and for many years worked the in-charge role, ensuring that all the emergency patients received a high standard of care. Narelle worked with all the medical teams, making sure the emergency workload ran smoothly through each weekend for the last few decades.


Narelle on the right and best friend Patricia Slavin on the left. Continue reading

Posted in: Nursing experiences, nursing history
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How do nurses feel about mixed gender wards?

Last week, A Current Affair presented a tabloid-style report on men and women sharing hospital wards in NSW.

Watch their report here.

Despite the sensationalised treatment of this issue, it is a real issue, not the least because of the NSW Health directive that “Patients who are staying overnight in a NSW public health facility do not have to sleep in the same room or ward bay, use mixed bathroom facilities or pass through opposite gender areas to reach their own facilities.”

current affair mixed

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Posted in: Nursing experiences