Penalty rates: 13,000 nurses and midwives respond

A couple of weeks ago we asked you to take part in an ANMF survey on penalty rates – what do they mean to you as a nurse or midwife? Well, over 13,000 of you responded across Australia and it’s clear that you value penalty rates very highly.

An overwhelming 93 percent of survey respondents warn that they are prepared to take action to protect their penalty rates – over 60% said this would include stop work or strike action.

penalty rates theatre

The survey received 13,101 responses, with its key findings showing that:

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Posted in: Employment issues, Unions
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Work Health and Safety Essentials for Nurses and Midwives – booklet and videos

In 2013, the NSWNMA, in partnership with WorkCover NSW, produced a new edition of Work Health and Safety Essentials for Nurses and Midwives. This was the second edition of what was originally titled OHS Essentials for Nurses, to take into account the introduction of new work health and safety (WHS) legislation in 2012.

That legislation introduced a number of new considerations, terminology, standards and penalties, as well as providing ways for workers to participate in how WHS is managed in their workplace.

Nurses and midwives work in a variety of roles in many different workplaces, with different safety risks. This resource was developed to provide the essentials for all of them to meet the challenges of WHS in daily practice.

safety nurse

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Posted in: Employment issues, Issues and Challenges, NSWNMA, Nurse health, Videos
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Why the government would have us pay more for poorer health

Today, Nurse Uncut considers ‘price signals’, Medicare, ‘efficiency’ and the myth of ‘unsustainability’. 

This piece, republished from The Conversation, is by John Attia, Professor of Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology at University of Newcastle, and John Duggan, Conjoint Professor at University of Newcastle.

The Coalition government has been claiming that Australia’s public health system is unsustainable since the 2014 budget. But its plans for the health system actually reflect the underlying belief that user-pays health systems are better – despite evidence to the contrary.


Less than a year and a half into the Abbott government’s first term, we’re on our second health minister and the third iteration of some kind of plan to introduce a co-payment for seeing a doctor. Despite widespread and vocal opposition to its plans, the government remains committed to introducing this price signal into the public health system.

Underpinning this move is the government’s commitment to a user-pays health system. But there’s now a large body of evidence showing such systems not necessarily great for the nation’s health. Here are four common ideas about market-based health systems and why they are not true.

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Posted in: Advocacy, Health funding

Fight for your working rights on March 4

It’s clear that the federal Government’s Productivity Commission inquiry could deliver cuts to penalty rates and the return of unfair individual contracts. Not to mention this Government’s attempts to erode Medicare, deregulate university fees – which would lead to $100,000 degrees – and cut the pension and superannuation.

The time to stand up and say no is now.

Let’s march together with neighbours, workmates, friends and family in a national rally on Wednesday, 4 March.

You can rsvp here to stand up for your penalty rates.


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Posted in: Advocacy, Events
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Reflecting on my year as a new graduate nurse in Alice Springs

An unusual new grad reflects on her year in an unusual hospital. 

I am a 50+ year old and have just completed my  New Grad year at Alice Springs Hospital. It has been so much more than I could ever have imagined.

I thought I would be the oldest New Grad by far – and I wasn’t.

Language:  Initially, language was the biggest challenge for me. A large proportion of the staff at Alice Springs are from non-English-speaking backgrounds.  I’ve worked with people from India, African countries, Hong Kong, China, the Phillippines, Germany, Ireland, Chile, Burma and Iran, to name a few.


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Posted in: New graduates, Nursing experiences, Nursing students, Rural
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