As coronavirus has swept the globe, QEII’s Nursing Services team has risen to the challenge of managing patient care.
Director of Nursing Nicki Dennis said staff had gone above and beyond while the public health crisis unfolded.
“We had to deploy vulnerable people straight away and stand up staff to backfill during the pandemic, and staff did it with no complaints. It was a positive response across the board,” she said.
Ms Dennis said her team had worked hand in glove with her and the other hospital departments to ensure the safety of colleagues and patients.
“Our response meant we had to move the whole hospital around. Endoscopy had to move to theatre, theatre staff were deployed to ICU; and of course we then had to undo it all,” she said.
“To the credit of our nurses, there has really been no negativity or hesitancy. We gave them insight into the why and they just got on with what they needed to do. From a whole hospital perspective and within Nursing Services we’ve all worked so well together, stepping up and leading all the way.”
Ms Dennis said the actions of her colleagues within Nursing Services over so many months deserved praise which is why the Team Award for International Nurses Day went to the entire nursing cohort.
“There really was no way to identify any one outstanding team over the past 12 months when so many aspects of our service stood tall for the various interruptions and projects on the go,” she said.
“Staff stepped up on weekends to do more sterilising, and we took on more patients with surgical issues through the Emergency department during the broader sterilising issue experienced in 2019.
Ms Dennis said the nursing teams contributed to changes in models of care and streamlining services in line with strategic change within Metro South Health and nurses had also been engaged in improving the quality of patient care resulting exemplary outcomes leading the way when benchmarked against other peer organisations within Health Roundtable.
“The COVID-19 response is something I am actually quite proud I was part of leading. Seeing everyone getting on with what we needed to do and walking towards it rather than running away from it was something truly great to witness.”
Twenty-twenty is an auspicious date for the pandemic’s arrival having been declared The International Year of the Nurse and Midwife by the World Health Organisation in honour of the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, the world's most famous nurse.
“All my colleagues should be proud of what they have achieved during this special year for our profession,” Ms Dennis said.