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Nurse Practitioner crowned PAH's 2024 Nurse of the Year

16 May 2024

PA Dermatology Nurse Unit Manager (NUM) and Nurse Practitioner (NP) Christine Shen has levelled up her skincare game once again, after glowing reviews claimed her the title of PAH’s 2024 International Nurses Day Nurse of the Year. 

Her dedication to advancing PA’s Dermatology unit an example among her peers, Christine adds the honour to an already impressive repertoire. 

From coordinating patient waitlists, surgeries, and various dermatology clinics at the unit, Christine’s passion for the body’s largest organ transpires through every facet of her work.

With expertise in medical dermatology, Christine coordinates and delivers care for some of the unit’s most complex skin conditions, while coordinating a range of clinics including Australia’s first Familial Melanoma clinic, the High Risk Melanoma Surveillance Clinic, the Hidradenitis Suppurativa Multidisciplinary Clinic, and the See and Treat Skin Lesion Clinic. 

“As a Nurse Practitioner, I see patients with a variety of dermatological conditions, especially those who require complex biological treatments. I run consults with my medical supervisor, prescribe medications and treatments, and coordinate follow-up appointments with patients in clinic,” she said. 

An expert in complex skin conditions, the bulk of Christine’s work is shared between clinical work and care coordination for complex dermatological conditions. But it’s her solution-focused, innovative approach to the specialty that stood Christine apart at this year’s IND awards. 

“We know we have a substantial waitlist for Dermatology. Some of our outpatients are waiting longer than two years to see a Dermatologist in clinic. To address the waitlist and give our patients better and faster access to our Dermatologist team, we developed a Planned Care virtual clinic.”

Officially named the Virtual Teledermatology Clinic, the service effectively fast-tracks care pathways by triaging patients based on key markers such as demographic, clinical condition, and severity of symptoms. 

“Patients who accept the Planned Care clinic pathway are usually offered a virtual consult with one of our medical officers within 2-3 days after receiving their medical history proforma and clinical images. After the initial virtual consultation, we can offer a face-to-face appointment where clinically required.”

With Planned Care funding approved in early 2024, the clinic was recruiting, setting up and running by March, a remarkable feat for the new team. 

With the Clinic enabling an additional 100 consultations each week, the success of the new service speaks for itself.

Christine says the award came as a complete surprise to her in the haze of running the clinic.

“I was very surprised as I had no idea this was coming. I didn’t even know I had been nominated.”

PAH congratulates Christine on this well-deserved recognition, and for her dedication to leading the mammoth effort at Dermatology. 

Last updated 16 May 2024
Last reviewed 16 May 2024

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