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Three new nurses en route to Deni

Deniliquin Hospital will receive three graduate Registered Nurses as part of the Murrumbidgee Local Health District’s ‘Gradstart’ program.

The nurses are currently in Wagga Wagga for their induction and will be touching down in Deniliquin in coming weeks.

Deniliquin Local Health Advisory Committee chair Lourene Liebenberg said the addition of these nurses was a great result for the community and would help relieve the hospital’s shortage of staff.

“Staff shortages are experienced by all of health in Australia and COVID continues to impact staff being unable to work, which of course exacerbates the problem,” she said.

“Any staff, regardless of qualifications, being able to join our health service is incredibly helpful in filling rosters and enabling our facility to continue to provide quality and safe care to our Deni residents.

“This remains the number one priority.”

Mrs Liebenburg said there were many things come into play to ensure we could retain the RN’s who often were travelling from metro areas to work in regional towns.

“Making them feel welcoming in the community and supported by those around them plays a big part, as does finding ongoing suitable accommodation specific to their needs,” she said.

“Ensuring they know what activities and groups there are around to get involved in, and people from the community reaching out to them can make a big difference in how they settle in.

“Naponda Auxiliary has contacted LHAC, with the idea of providing care and welcome packages to the new nurses, which has been a fantastic initiative.

“We feel we can expand this project to involve all of the community to become a part of a consistent and ongoing ‘welcome program’ for any new health professionals who are deciding to make Deni their home.”

A total of 65 graduate nurses have been employed across communities throughout the Murrumbidgee Local Health District, in the second intake for the year.

The first intake in February saw 54 nurses commence in roles across the district, in which Deniliquin received one graduate.

Another 49 newly graduated Registered Nurses are planned to start positions in the third intake in August.

NSW’s Regional Health Minister Bronnie Taylor said these numbers would make 2022 the largest ever graduate intake for the district.

“It is our workforce that makes the NSW public health system the envy of the world, and it is wonderful to see these newly graduated Registered Nurses choosing to begin their careers in rural and regional NSW,” Mrs Taylor said.

“As someone who spent the best part of their nursing career at a regional hospital, I know the skills and experience these new nurses will gain will set them up for success into their future nursing career.”

While it is not yet known whether Deniliquin Hospital would receive any further nurses in the August intake, Mrs Liebenburg said MLHD was doing a “fantastic job” with recruitment this year.

“One nurse joined the Deni hospital in February, which now brings the total to four for the year thus far,” she said.

“We have to mention that part of being a graduate nurse at any facility is being able to work across a number of areas and to continue up-skilling, learning and being able to access ongoing education and supervision.

“Deni Hospital is very fortunate to have a very experienced Nurse Educator, who plays a big part in providing this education and support; as well as many staff with many years experience contributing to supporting the new graduates.

“This really stands Deni in good stead to continue to be allocated new graduates.”

Anyone in the community who wishes to donate, be involved or contribute ideas to the “welcome program and package” are encouraged to call or text Mrs Liebenburg on 0428281060 or email lourene@bigpond.com