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WNSWLHD announces Nursing & Midwifery Team of the Year

12 May 2022

The Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) is delighted to announce the COVID Care in the Community (CCiC) and Remote In-Home Monitoring Team as its Nursing/Midwifery Team of the Year, to help mark International Nurses Day.

The WNSWLHD Nursing/Midwifery Team of the Year is based on three criteria; the team’s demonstration and commitment to the Living Well Together values, a commitment to the nursing profession and the demonstration of leadership in the provision of nursing quality care.

Adrian Fahy, WNSWLHD Executive Director of Quality, Clinical Safety and Nursing, congratulated the entire team, which included 13 different nursing disciplines working together to provide support and care.

“The CCiC and Remote In-Home Monitoring Team is the first of its kind in Western NSW. It is no exaggeration to say that without this team, the impact of COVID-19 in our District would have been significantly worse,” Mr Fahy said.

“The team was formed rapidly in August 2021 in response to the escalating COVID-19 pandemic, to help provide care and support for COVID-positive patients and their families in their own homes.

“Since 10 August last year, when the COVID-19 pandemic truly began in our District, more than 9,000 COVID-positive patients have been cared for through the CCiC program, with an average of 500 to 600 being in the team’s care each day.

“Being able to provide the right care to people in their home significantly eased the burden on local and regional health facilities, allowing those hospitals and staff to continue providing the best care possible for all patients, not just those with COVID-19.”

The CCiC and Remote In-Home Monitoring Team faced significant challenges presented by COVID-19, many of which it continues to overcome as the program evolves alongside the pandemic.

“Patients enrolled in the CCiC were spread out across the entire District, many of them were vulnerable people with complex health or social care needs, or people in the very rural and remote areas of our communities,” Mr Fahy said.

“The CCiC and Remote In-Home Monitoring Team is a wonderful example of collaboration. While there are far too many nurses to name individually, we must thank every single person and team who stepped up to support and play a role in this program.

“After the pressure of the initial Delta wave, many of those staff continued to step up throughout the Christmas period as the Omicron variant emerged and continue with the program today, caring for patients with the highest risk of serious illness from COVID-19.

“We simply don’t know how many people could have ended up in hospital as a result of COVID-19 had the CCiC program not been formed, or our incredible staff not stepped up to support.

“Through their dedication, commitment and care, the District’s rate of hospital admissions as a result of COVID-19 stayed and remains low. Not only that, the experience those staff members have gained will be invaluable going forward.

“Congratulations to the entire team and everyone involved, but also to all of our amazing finalists and our entire workforce. We thank you all, the amazing work you do does not go unnoticed.”

There are more nurses and midwives in NSW public hospitals than at any other time in history. Between 2012 and 2021, the nursing workforce and midwifery workforce in NSW increased by 9,599 full-time equivalent (FTE) staff, or 23 per cent, to 51,794 FTE.

The 2021-22 NSW Health total budget is $30.2 billion. The NSW Government is also investing in a further 5,000 nurses and midwives from 2019-2022 under a record $2.8 billion boost to frontline staff.