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Our Awards

Our Living Quality and Safety Awards

The 2021 Awards

​​Our annual Living Quality & Safety Symposium and Gala Awards Dinner events are highlights of the year for the Western NSW Local Health District. 

 The Awards Program brings health care professionals together, to share and celebrate achievements in innovation and delivering world-class health care to our communities. 

A massive thank you to our partners who help make this event possible.


2021 Finalists

​​A massive congratulations to our awards finalists;​


Finalists, Philips ANZ Integrated Value-Based Care Award


​Take a Walk in My Shoes

Integrated Care in partnership with the Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network, developed a model of care for custodial clients with complex health and social needs to provide multi-disciplinary, cross sectorial coordinated care post- release into Western NSW. The project demonstrated a reduction in ED presentations and recidivism. Clients reported feeling trusted, included and having an understanding of their care plans and health care pathways. Families, Carers and providers reported a better experience of care, along with increased satisfaction from integrated care coordinators delivering the care. The project successfully demonstrated positive experience and outcomes for clients, promoting person-centred and team based care, enhancing access and engagement with primary care services, improving health literacy with complex health and social needs post release from custody.

​Maternal Transfers Redesign

The Maternal Transfers Redesign (MTR) initiative was developed in response a number of issues that impact negatively on the transfer of women experiencing complications in pregnancy. The initiative aimed to promote a systematic approach to consultation, referral and transfer of pregnant women; and ensure pregnant women receive the right care, in the right place, at the right time, as close to home as possible. Solutions for the implementation included clinical resources, teamwork and partnerships, and eHealth technologies. Outcomes include financial efficiencies and better outcomes for women such as a reduction in unnecessary transfers. This initiative has resulted in a sustainable model for the coordination of maternal transfers for Western NSW LHD which will be of interest to other LHDs wishing to implement a similar process.


​Partnership in Aged Care Emergency Service using Interactive Technology

Partnerships in Aged Care Emergency services using Interactive Technology (PACE-IT) Project aimed to:
1. Prevent avoidable transfers from Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACF) to the Emergency Department (ED) and 
2. Improve communication between the ED, RACFs, residents, their families and General Practitioners.
Orange is part of a stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled implementation study that evaluates uptake of telehealth and ED avoidance. Initial results for October 2020-March 2021 have shown that 27% of PACE-IT Telehealth Consultations have resulted in ED avoidance and 60% of residents transferred to ED, the RACF​s have communicated with the ED. Collaborative use of telehealth assists with improving outcomes for residents and assists with unnecessary transfers to the ED.

​Remote Video-Assisted Chemotherapy (RVAC) Program

Outcomes for cancer patients living in rural/remote areas are worse than their metropolitan counterparts due to disparity in access to treatment. A study in remote Queensland using non-oncology, community-based nurses with basic training in safe handling of chemotherapy was successful in delivering low/moderate intensity anti-cancer therapies. This research was translated into practice as the Remote Video Assisted Chemotherapy (RVAC) program; which provides a safe and effective platform for the delivery of much needed cancer treatments in WNSWLHD. In the first 2 years of the Coonabarabran RVAC program, 206 treatments were delivered to 26 individual patients, saving 820 hours and 68000km of travel. Referrals per capita to cancer services in towns with an RVAC facility is now similar to Dubbo. Positive qualitative outcomes were also reported.

​Utilising remote monitoring to optimise patient care at home

COVID-19 created the need for population wide monitoring. Realising this need, Western NSW Integrated Care developed a remote in-home monitoring (RiHM) program that aimed to optimise virtual care technologies for patients and clinicians to minimise exposure to COVID-19, enhance usual care, and ease the demand on hospitals; while ensuring the safe delivery of patient-centred healthcare. As part of the evaluation, quantitative data were extracted on patient enrolment, patient and clinician activity (experience and patient health outcomes). Qualitative interviews were undertaken with patients, and surveys with patients, carers and clinicians. Patients, carers and clinicians reported positive experiences with using remote monitoring technology, management and improvement of health condition(s). The RiHM program successfully demonstrated that patients can be safely monitored and cared for using remote monitoring technology.


Finalists, Three Rivers University Department of Rural Health Excellence in Aboriginal Healthcare Award​


​Breast Screen Aboriginal Engagement – with a digital difference

​The Aboriginal Engagement Projects aimed to increase Aboriginal women’s participation in Breast Screening. This was achieved through the use of culturally appropriate community led ‘Yarning Circles’ (YC); which provided a safe space to discuss the importance of and also addressed any fears and barriers to screening. This initial project showed excellent results. Like many other services, COVID-19 grounded BreastScreen NSW (Greater Western) including suspending our YCs. Cancer would not be put on hold so we had to find a new strategy to connect to Aboriginal women. We trialled Virtual Yarning Circles (VYCs) which ensured we maintained engagement and kept us on track with our goal of increasing the participation rates of Aboriginal women.


Collaborative Impact – Making a Difference (CI-MaD)

Maranguka uses the collective impact methodology in its day to day operations. This Local Health District (LHD) submission is called ‘Collaborative Impact- Making a Difference’ (CI-MaD) because of the LHDs active participation with Maranguka Community Hub in Bourke. Maranguka's model of Aboriginal self-governance empowers the Bourke Aboriginal community, to coordinate the right mix and timing of services. It is a community owned and led, multi-disciplinary team working in partnership with relevant government, non-government agencies and philanthropic. Our LHD sees this as a way forward addressing closing the gap and ensuring sustainable and appropriate health outcomes for our most vulnerable. Maranguka is supported by a cross-sector leadership group which our LHD is part of, which assists in authorising and facilitating the work in Bourke including removing any potential blockages.
​​

​Stop Smoking, Start Living program

The Stop Smoking, Start Living (SSSL) program aimed to combat the effects of intergenerational smoking in Aboriginal families living in the Western New South Wales Local Health District (WNSWLHD). SSSL collaborated with eight communities to create and promote Aboriginal targeted smoke-free family resources. Training developed the capacity of Aboriginal Health Workers (AHW) to provide smoking cessation brief interventions (SCBI). Through yarning, 18 community assets (videos, banners and calendar) were created, empowering community members to share their stories and ideas. Assets were approved by the community and the Cancer Institute​ NSW, then launched. Social media assets, launched on the WNSWLHD Facebook page, had an initial reach of 102,364 users and generated a minimum of 14,934 instances of engagement. 21.5% of Aboriginal Health Workers (AHW) attended SCBI training.​


Finalists, Excellence in the Provision of Mental Health Services Award

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​Cloz Encounters of the virtual kind

The Adult Clozapine Service aimed to align with WNSWLHD Strategic Plan 2020 – 2025 goal of having ‘one service across many places’ for the care of consumers in rural areas experiencing treatment-resistant Schizophrenia by 30th April 2021. Through the registration of GPs to prescribe clozapine for easy transfer to primary care at Dubbo and weekly and 6 monthly virtual psychiatry reviews for better access to psychiatry at Bloomfield. As a result, there was the transfer of 21 patients from the Dubbo Community Mental Health Team (CMHT) to primary care and 100% (n=39) patients, with up to date 6 monthly reviews in Bloomfield. Dubbo and Bloomfield Centres have now merged under the same model of care leading to the formation of a new Western NSW LHD Clozapine Centre.

​Dougie the wonder Dog - Using pets as therapy for therapeutic engagement​

In 2019-20, teams at Bloomfield collaborated on ways to effectively engage therapeutically with clients.
Macquarie unit clients identified an interest in pet therapy. The aim was to engage the clients by using a pet companion as evidence showed the value of pet therapy. An initial dog was deemed inappropriate to the program due to its size and age and was subsequently re-homed. A small breed was found and Dougie arrived in the unit as an excited 9-week-old puppy. 88% of client’s reported they liked having Dougie on the unit and 83% reported that they felt happier having him there. Caring for Dougie has provided patients with ​shared responsibility and has enhanced collaboration among clients and staff report enhanced wellbeing on the unit.


Finalists, Charles Sturt University Health Research and Innovation Award​


​Improving the safe accelerated discharge of low-risk chest pain from a regional emergency department during the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID pandemic placed pressure on clinicians to rationalise diagnostic investigations and minimise the length of stay to reduce hospital overcrowding. The project aim was to enable the accelerated discharge of low-risk chest pain presentations at Bathurst Emergency, by increasing clinician use of risk stratification tools. Our project improved the risk stratification of chest pain presentations from 21% to 77%. This resulted in a 12% increased accelerated discharge of patients from 16% to 28%and a reduction in the average length of stay from 6 hours 5 minutes to 4 hours and 45 minutes, without any adverse outcomes. This project showed that increased risk stratification of chest pain presentations enables clinicians to better identify those at low risk of ACS  who may be suitable for accelerated discharge.


​Telehealth Adult Oral Health Assessment

The NSW Priority Oral Health Program requires adult patients needing dental care to be clinically assessed for treatment prioritisation. In response to COVID-19 restrictions, Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) Oral Health Service implemented telehealth phone calls for these assessments. In the past 12 months, 3113 patients have been involved in telehealth assessments completed by a roster of 17 clinicians. Of the 128 patients surveyed, 78% preferred a telephone consultation for these short appointments, stating improved convenience and reduced travel requirements. Benefits as reported by clinicians also included better delivery of oral hygiene instructions, dietary advice and smoking cessation intervention. Improved time utilisation and cost-saving were reported by both patients and clinicians. The WNSWLHD telehealth process has been adopted by Far West LHD and is under consideration by three other Local Health District’s.​

​Virtual Clinical Pharmacy Service

To improve medication management and detect preventable medication-related harms through the implementation and evaluation of a Virtual Clinical Pharmacy Service (VCPS) at rural and remote health facilities. The virtual pharmacists utilise the electronic medical record and video conferencing carts to provide a clinical pharmacy service at eight trial sites. A mixed-methods study design was developed to evaluate the virtual pharmacy service, utilising eMR patient data, surveys and focus groups.  The VCPS improved medication reconciliation, medication error detection rates and compliance with health standards. The VCPS was found to be acceptable.  A virtual pharmacy model of care has been successfully designed, implemented and evaluated in rural and remote health facilities and proved to be a valuable service to the LHD.​


Finalists, Keeping People Healthy Award


​Cigarettes, You Take My Breath Away. Implementation of a Pharmacist Led Nicotine Replacement Therapy Intervention on the Medical Ward in a Regional NSW Hospital

To evaluate the impact of pharmacists on the provision of the 5A’s of smoking cessation and determine if their involvement contributes to increased screening, documentation of smoking status and Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) uptake for inpatients on the medical ward between June 1st-August 31th 2020.
Pharmacist standing orders for NRT were developed. A retrospective pre-and-post intervention audit compared the delivery of smoking cessation interventions against the 5A’s of smoking cessation.
In comparison to baseline data, there was a 35.5% increase in smoking status documentation, a 43.3% increase in assessment for readiness to quit, a 56.8% increase in the assessment of nicotine dependence, a 16.3% increase in NRT prescription and an increase in patient education on admission and discharge.
Collaborative patient-centred approaches to smoking cessation management can improve outcome measures compared to baseline.

​Paediatric Speech Pathology Student Community Clinic

Orange Health Service (OHS) Speech Pathology Department developed and implemented the “paediatric speech pathology student community clinic’’. The project aimed to increase the engagement of developmentally vulnerable children and families through a community-based service provision whilst also creating a sustainable approach to student placements. Plan, do, study, act cycles were used to monitor the project, with two key strategies implemented: 
1. Establishment of a community-based student clinic within local preschools attracting a high number of Aboriginal children; and
2. Development of a streamlined and structured approach to the management of placements (including booking, orientation and timetabling). 
The project resulted in increased service provision to developmentally vulnerable children within the community and high levels of student satisfaction. The project has been continued and further developed in 2021.
​​

​Virtual Antenatal Education

The Virtual antenatal education program aimed to provide antenatal education to women and their partners across a large geographical area using virtual technology. Following the development of the program, the Virtual Antenatal Education program was launched on the 1st of April 2020. Following evaluation, this program has:
  • Created a sustainable education program
  • Created significant cost reduction for women, and the organisation
  • Developed greater patient experiences
  • Increased health literacy, and health promotion
  • Increased skills and collaboration between staff
In conclusion, this project has met the needs of the community, has empowered women and their partners by providing information and advice that is easily understood, accounts for risk and meets the needs of women and their families across Western NSW Local Health District.

​Western NSW COVID 19 Call Centre March to June 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic created an urgent need for additional support to the Western NSW Public Health Unit (PHU) and health facilities to address the high volume of enquiries. The aim was to establish a COVID-19 Call Centre (CC) to manage all COVID enquiries/calls entering the LHD.
The HPU was tasked and established a functional CC within 24 hours. Prior to going live locations, staff, training, equipment, communications and information& technology infrastructure were sourced and implemented.
The CC received 3292 calls, made 2671 referrals to PHU fever clinics, General Practitioners, HealthDirect, other government agencies, and Crime stoppers/police.
The CC achieved its aim of managing large volumes of enquiries, plus establishing rural health infrastructure, processes and skills that can be reactivated quickly in another emergency.


Finalists, SC Johnson Professional Patient Safety First Award


​Dubbo Health Service Tracheostomy Committee

In 2018, the Dubbo Health Service identified that tracheostomy care was not well-coordinated, with limited communication and collaboration across health professionals. The formation of a Tracheostomy Management Committee aimed to improve patient outcomes by the provision of high-quality care through the provision of clinical and executive leadership, development and review of guidelines and policies, provision of education including management of emergencies, management of equipment issues, and collaboration of multidisciplinary team members. This project has resulted in a dedicated pathway for admitting patient’s with a tracheostomy, the development of a dedicated Local Operating Protocol to guide patient flow and bed placement of tracheostomy patients and the standardisation of equipment to ensure wards maintain stock levels to appropriate levels.​

​Engineering Down the Risk

This project aimed to reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infections for both staff and patients by minimising the spread of airborne infectious particles in a clinical space in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A major variation request was made to the Australasian Health Facility Guidelines (AHFGs) Steering Committee to change the construction of the ventilation system in the new Intensive Care Unit under construction as part of Dubbo Hospital Redevelopment. 
A statewide reference group was formed. Recommendations from the reference group resulted in the new ICU ventilation being redesigned to provide a ‘pandemic mode’ increasing the number of negative pressure rooms from one to six.
A building design change engineered down the risk of airborne infectious particles being spread via ventilation ductwork.

​G Ward #EndPJparalysis 90-day challenge

To get patients up, dressed in day clothes and moving when in hospital. This promotes confidence and independence, however, most importantly reduces patients from deconditioning.
At 12:00hrs each day staff audited the:
1. Number of patients up and mobile
2. Number of patients dressed
3. Number of falls in the past 24 hours
4. Number of hospital-acquired pressure ulcers in the past 24 hours
Of the 2137 occupied beds for General Ward, 85% of patients were up and mobilised by 12:00hrs, 43% of patients were dressed in day clothes and a total of 11 falls occurred during the Challenge.
There has been a reduction of inpatient falls of 82% on General Ward since the commencement of the challenge.

​Save Our Skin (SOS)

Save Our Skin (SOS) is a multidisciplinary, multi-site project developed to tackle the incidence of healthcare-acquired pressure injuries (PI) and incontinence associated dermatitis (IAD).
IAD can be difficult to diagnose and differentiate from other skin conditions and is often mistaken for a PI. Prevention is the primary goal in the management of IAD, and should consist of evidence-based (EB) strategies. The SOS project, provides clinicians with a structured way of implementing collective and reliable EB practices, to improve care processes and patient outcomes.
Pre-project, the identification and treatment of IAD was varied and did not align with best practice guidelines. The assessment of IAD was based on experience, not on a validated IAD tool. Treatment was based on habitual nursing practices rather than current evidence.


​Finalists, Spotless People and Culture Award


​Developing Rural Generalist Nurses through tailored and flexible education delivery

Providing world-class rural health care close to home for the population of Western NSW relies on the attraction and retention of nurses, as well as the development and ongoing maintenance of the unique skills required by this workforce. The Rural Generalist Nursing (RGN) program is an innovative education and support initiative designed to provide clinical assessment skills, supporting full scope of practice and effective collaboration with on-site, virtual medical and clinical health services. The 12-month RGN program for enrolled and registered staff was rolled out in August 2020, and completed in all 29 target sites by July 2021. It was designed in collaboration with nurses, virtual medical staff and facility management and has received overwhelmingly positive feedback to date. ​

​The mentoring program

To create a mentoring program in Western NSW Local Health District that connects staff professionally through a structured platform, to develop new professional network links and sharing professional wins and challenges. Due to the large geographical area, an innovative approach was taken to use the Organisational Development Unit as the connector, a third party – to link staff together across disciplines, directorates and towns. Using the Public Service Commission capability framework, cultural advice, disability information and previous experiences, professional development in leadership and management have been sought and shared by over 180 participants across the LHD. Empowering professional growth through safe conversations.​

​Stop the Bloody Waste

Parkes hospital has no on-site transfusion laboratory to store or supply blood products. Alternatively, Parkes red blood cells (RBC) are stored in a satellite blood fridge for planned and emergencies transfusions. Emergency red blood cell wastage at Parkes was 37.7%. A waste benchmark of 3% is set by the National Blood Authority for the laboratory which supplies the RBC to Parkes. The excessive waste at Parkes negatively impacts the supplying transfusion laboratory wastage results. The aim of ‘Stop the Bloody Waste’ is by December 2021, Parkes Hospital Emergency red blood cell wastage will be reduced to 6%. Using quality improvement, change ideas were implemented and evaluated. The project has achieved a 47% reduction in Emergency RBC wastage from the Parkes blood fridge.​


​Finalists, SalaryPackagingPLUS Transforming Patient Experience Award

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​Feeding our mothers

To provide meal options to boarder mothers that are more accessible, cost-effective and reduce waste.
Boarder mothers are discharged from maternity with babies in the nursery. Instead of plated trays, they receive breakfast packs, vouchers for hot meals from the hospital cafeteria, and frozen dinners. Beverages/snacks are provided. Posters that communicate food options available.
An audit in July 2019 showed maternity has the largest amount of untouched plated meals (30% of 5608 meals). The change was made in August 2019 after consultation with maternity staff. A reduction in untouched meals for the maternity ward has occurred. An estimated $6000 has been saved over the past 12 months from reduced waste. Meals are more flexible and accessible. Food waste has reduced leading to financial savings.​

​Improving patient flow in speech pathology outpatient services

The aim of this project was for “100% of outpatients referred to speech pathology services to be seen for an initial assessment within locally defined clinical benchmarks”. This involved developing clinical benchmarks targets and commencing an Allied Health Assistant (AHA) run clinic to manage and prioritise referrals.
The project resulted in:
  • Initial assessments scheduled within benchmarks 
  • Consistent service delivery across team members
  • Client satisfaction with AHA- run clinic 
  • Efficient and cost-saving model
Due to the success of this project, it is being shared across the district to support the use of AHA’s inpatient flow. Future directions of the project will continue to review current service delivery processes to improve value-based care.

​Subcutaneous home injection program

Western NSW Local Health District has patients eligible to participate in the National Blood Authority’s Subcutaneous Immunoglobulin (SCIg) Home Injecting Program. Treatment is managed in the home with education and support provided by the patient’s local facility, partnering with CSL Cares Program. This treatment option improves the quality of life for patients.
Bathurst Ambulatory Care provided the first SCIg home injecting program in WNSWLHD. 100% of participants surveyed confirmed SCIg was effective at treating their condition and felt confident to manage SCIg after completing the home education program. 83% stated the treatment was easy to fit into their life.
The SCIg home program has an estimated saving per patient of $3,522pa (Year 1). It also reduced time off work/school to attended long clinic appointments every 4 weeks.​

​Telestroke – Providing World-Class Stroke Care

Background: Stroke is a medical emergency that requires rapid access to diagnostics and specialist management.
Aim: The NSW Telestroke model of care offers a way to deliver access to timely specialist diagnostics and management and deliver evidence-based treatment closer to patient’s homes.
Method: Telestroke involves linking specialist stroke physicians to regional sites to support the provision of stroke care via telehealth technology. 
Results: Improved access to reperfusion therapies and reduced variation in thrombolysis administration times.
Conclusion: Telestroke has been shown to improve access to stroke therapies and improve patient outcomes.​

​Virtual Paediatric Feeding Pilot

Paediatric feeding challenges are common, but specialist clinics are scarce in rural settings. In response to service and workforce gaps, an existing interdisciplinary Feeding Clinic was expanded into a virtual 'hub and spoke' model to service seven community health sites and upskill local clinicians.

The research pilot evaluated the accessibility, acceptability and effectiveness of a virtual service. 33 clients from outside of Orange were referred in an 8 month period, 174 appointments offered and 24,536km saved in travel. Statistically significant improvements in children's growth, number of accepted foods and overall feeding behaviours occurred. Key themes from semi-structured virtual interviews with clinicians emerged: high benefit for client outcomes, benefit to clinician's knowledge and confidence in treating feeding difficulties and reduced professional isolation through connection with discipline-specific colleagues.​


Finalists, Ochre Health Excellence in MPS/Rural Facilities Award


​Caring for Carers - Residential Aged Care (RAC) COVID-19 Response Initiative

 In 2020 the COVID–19 Pandemic caused RAC facilities to implement tight restrictions on face to face visitation. Restrictions resulted in carers and family members experiencing anxiety, distress, and disconnection with loved ones, fearing for their health and wellbeing. The CSP responded by initiating widespread engagement with carers. Individual phone conversations with carers provided an opportunity to discuss how they were coping, and for the CSP to ensure carers were aware of pathways for further support. Carers were offered the opportunity to share feedback about what they felt facilities were doing well or could be doing differently to improve the wellbeing and care of residents. The initiative resulted in significant meaningful engagement with carers. Feedback gathered was used by facilities to make changes and enhance care.​

​For the love of Nanna: A collaboration to protect our most vulnerable

The COVID-19 pandemic was the catalyst for unprecedented collaboration with independent Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACFs) across the LHD. A team of experts from three directorates was brought together to support RACFs with COVID-19 outbreak management planning and preparation. Challenges dealing with the private sector were diminished, given the magnitude of a potential outbreak. This presented an opportunity for accelerated relationship building. Support included: readiness assessments, desktop scenario exercises, infection prevention and control (IP&C) audits, guidance around outbreak management plans and establishment of a Community of Practice (COP).
All 49 facilities have actively engaged with the LHD team. The project has paved the way for ongoing collaboration between the LHD and RACFs: a timely victory with the ongoing pandemic and impending aged care system reform.​

Finalists, Volunteer of the Year Award


​Louise Keady

Louise has been a member of the Coonamble Health Council since 2005. Louise is open, respectful and supportive towards all staff. She collaborates with the community to bring concerns and community issues to the attention of the Health Council. ​

​Christine McIlvain

Christine was an inaugural member of the Cabonne Health Council in 2013 which supported Canowindra, Molong and Eugowra. Christine later joined the Canowindra Health Council and has become an integral part of this group. Christine’s passions align with improving Mental Health Wellbeing and outcomes in Aboriginal health.

​John Bentley

John has been a vital member of the Mudgee Hospital Health Council since 2013 and chaired the council from 2015-2020. John actively sought community input into the Mudgee Hospital redevelopment and advocated for improved facilities and access to rural health care.​

​Kate Winders

Kate Winders has been a member of Cobar Health Council since October 2012. Kate is a well-respected member of the Cobar community due to her honesty, eagerness to help and pursuit towards the safety and wellbeing of communities. Kate is passionate about providing all individuals access to appropriate health care and ensuring the community are well informed on services available.

​Peter Harris

Peter Harris has been a constant presence at Nyngan Health Service since the admission of his wife, Beth, in 2018. Peter has demonstrated a commitment to rural health far beyond expectations and continues to advocate for patients and residents, in honour of Beth’s journey. In everything Peter does in the health space, he is committed to empowering patients, residents and their families, respecting health care workers, collaborating with the community and sharing his and Beth’s story openly.

​Linda Taylor

Linda has been an inaugural member of the Trundle Health Council since 2008. Initially, she joined as a representative of the Trundle Hospital Auxiliary. However, Linda has stayed on the Health Council as an interested community member. Linda has promoted the work of the Health Council and Hospital Auxiliary, volunteered for fundraisers and welcomed new staff to the community through her role as a Publicity Officer and Secretary since 2014.  

​Grenfell Multipurpose Health Service Hospital Auxiliary Committee

The Grenfell Multipurpose Health Service Hospital Auxiliary Committee have offered their active support for many years. They fundraise tirelessly for the Grenfell Multipurpose Health Service and are always willing to contribute to the facility. The committee has kindly purchased a number of items to ensure provide services and equipment for the facility over the course of their support.

​Don Reid - Cowra Health Council

Don initiated and led a community survey to better understand the views and needs of the people in Cowra and outlying villages in preparation for the redevelopment of the Cowra Health Services supported by the willing band of health councillors. Following the collation of the results, Don and three health councillors analysed the responses with the volunteers.  These results were presented to the Health Council and LHD and have been considered as part of the Ministry’s subsequent community consultations.

​Greater Western Area Human Research Ethics Committee (GWHREC)

The Greater Western Area Human Research Ethics Committee (GWHREC) reviews applications for research projects taking place across the LHD as well as those proposed for Far West, Southern and Murrumbidgee LHDs. Members are located in Bathurst, Orange, Dubbo, Bega, Broken Hill and Mulwala and meet 10 times a year via videoconference and once a year for a face-to-face meeting. Apart from their commitment to the full committee meetings, members are also called on to attend a number of sub-committee meetings to review low-risk applications. The committee is well-balanced with some members having served for many years and others recently appointed and bringing a fresh outlook to the reviews.​

Finalists, Staff member of the Year Award


​Kirsten Davis

Kirsten is a role model for demonstrating the CORE values of NSW Health. She deals with multiple challenges on a daily basis always with courtesy and individual attention to both clients and clinicians. Kirsten goes out of her way for staff functions with her cooking and catering. Even on the busiest of days, Kirsten is always friendly and caring.

​John Chamberlain

John is considered a valued team member within the site of Bloomfield Hospital. He is well known for his polite and non-judgemental demeanour to all staff and consumers. He has often received a nomination from his peers in rounding and compliments.

​Dara Hobden

Dara has been the Acting Manager of Application Support since 2019. Her role is to manage the eMR Business Analysts and iPM Analysts, located in 􀃕five different towns, as well as the team of Application Support Officers that provide 24 hour help with clinical IT issues. Dara has been instrumental in bringing these teams together to develop strong working relationships. The rapport amongst approximately 40 people has improved significantly since 2020 and enables us to all to work together more effectively to bring about excellent results in IT systems that are now an essential part of patient care. This has been achieved through Dara's creation of a daily virtual huddle which is attended by most.

​Leanne Stimpson

Leanne’s work in integrated, chronic and complex care reaches across many facets of the District; contributing to integrated care priorities including clients and carers, supporting health literacy, aged care, disability strategic planning and avoiding hospitalisation. Leanne is a strong advocate for rural health. Leanne leads effectively by example thereby encouraging others to take the journey with her. Her approach is steadfastly embedded in enhancing patient care and she is a strong advocate for our vulnerable clients across all cohorts within our District including mental health and disability.

​Shannon Nott

Shannon takes a ‘whole of health’ view of rural healthcare which encompasses not only the hospital sector but also primary care. He is a natural collaborator who listens and seeks advice from communities, GPs, representative groups, and parliamentary representatives across government jurisdictions. Beyond Shannon’s role as Director of Rural Medical Services, he provides extensive support to Operational Managers and other Clinicians as he recognises to achieve improvements in rural health, we need genuine multidisciplinary collaboration and innovation.

​Paul Elbourne

Paul has held various frontline and senior-level management positions, currently holding the position of Aboriginal Workforce Manager, where he is responsible for informing and guiding the strategic direction for District in Aboriginal workforce and culture. At the core of Paul’s work and evidently demonstrated to those who have been fortunate to work alongside Paul, is his passion and drive to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal peoples and communities. Recently in 2020, Paul led the negotiation and development of a partnership with TAFE NSW, to increase the opportunities for Aboriginal employees to engage in further tertiary studies to support career progression.

​Ann Jones

Ann Jones is an Endorsed Enrolled Nurse who since 2013 has been part of the Canowindra Community Health Nursing (CHN) Team. She regularly demonstrates exceptional collaboration within her role in the nursing team, the wider multidisciplinary team, and with the patient and their families. Ann regularly goes above and beyond for patients/ clients and their families, and has a very high level of emotional intelligence regarding ‘our team’. Ann is a great advocate for the patient and is proactive in management and discussions with the patient and family about all aspects of their care.

​Tiffany Charlton

Tiffany has been employed in the district for nineteen years in a variety of roles, working her way to her current role as Manager Human Resources. In this role, Tiffany is responsible for leading the Human Resources team to ensure continuous effective service with a responsive, innovative, performance-based and accountable customer focus; and working with business units to help them achieve their strategic, operational and performance goals and to build a constructive workplace culture through good leadership and coaching of people.

​Kira Leonard

Kira Leonard is a Speech Pathologist with WNSWLHD, she commenced in Canowindra 2014 as a full-time speech pathologist as a new graduate and embraced the challenges that a generalist sole position has, and soon became a leader in our team. She has relocated to Lachlan Health Service recently. Kira has excellent communication skills and spends a significant amount of her time liaising with external providers such as preschools, families and other multidisciplinary team members to ensure optimal care for her clients and patients.

​Leanne Casey

Leanne was seconded into a role in 2020 initially to coordinate the supplementary workforce demands that the COVID-19 pandemic was thought likely to incur. Leanne’s work has had to be both highly strategic, and very tactical. Her responsibilities have extended from representing the District on the State Health Emergency Operations Centre (SHEOC) through to working on communications assets to promote supplementary workforce opportunities. The changing nature and demands of the pandemic have meant that Leanne has had to both manoeuvre her own work around those changes, as well as assist collaborating partners to keep pace and respond appropriately.​

Finalists, HESTA Super Fund Inspiring Team Award

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​Palliative Care – Centre of Excellence

The Bathurst Hospital Medical Ward deserve to be recognised for their Palliative Care Approach. Their collaborative efforts led to the implementation of PCOC which educated staff about the different stages of Palliative Care and adopts an approach aimed at minimising adverse reactions from symptoms and optimising quality of life.

​Virtual Antenatal Education

The Virtual Antenatal Education Team rose to the challenge of developing, implementing and delivering a district-wide antenatal education program within four weeks to ensure women and their families had access to antenatal education following the uncertainty of the COVID-19 Pandemic. This initiative saw a collaborative partnership created between the Midwifery and Paediatrics Strategy team, four birthing facilities and twenty WNSWLHD midwives.

​Southern Sector Dietitians

The Parkes Community Health Centre highlights how dietitians at Condobolin, Cowra, Forbes, Parkes, Molong, Canowindra and Wellington united as a team to improve patient safety, increase their knowledge as a team and work to live well with each other and the communities in which they support.

​Working to enhance the eMR

The Clinical eHealth Projects team implement changes within clinical systems, particularly the electronic medical record (eMR). Their primary role is to enhance usability for clinicians which assists in their ability to deliver high-quality care to patients.

​Leading the way in Quality Care – Bathurst Medical Ward

The Bathurst Medical Ward has worked extremely hard over the past two years to build a strong safety culture, reliable systems, and encourage improvement – ‘living’ quality and safety in their everyday work. The leadership by the NUM and the Educator has been continuingly transforming this ward into a safe and reliable unit providing high quality patient centred care to all patients whilst ensuring staff engagement and ongoing professional development. Collaborative partnerships between teams has helped drive the team to reach remarkable goals with the support of the Executive Team.

​Mudgee Maternity Unit

The Mudgee Health Service Maternity Unit has implemented a number of changes to serve patient safety, improve quality of care, build reliability and resilience, and foster person-centred care. This is demonstrated through new rostering systems; monthly Maternal Clinical Risk Management Committee ( Meetings; the introduction of new processes around Quality Audit Reporting System  audits; Induction of Labour Safety Huddles; Midwifery Antenatal Postnatal Program; and many more projects which aim to deliver high standard clinical care while maintaining strong community ties.

​Cobar Health Service

The Cobar team have demonstrated resilience and resourcefulness through their ability to meet increasing work demands and overcome challenges such as geographical isolation. Their dedication towards improving patient care can be reflected through their collaboration with the Virtual Rural General Service (VRGS) team, locum medical officers and upskilling through the RG NETprogram.

​Working for Safety

The Canowindra Health Service aims to ensure there is consistent communication for all staff, patients and strong reliability inpatient care. Through the use of the Electronic Patient Journey Board (EPJB), the Patient Care Boards at the bedside and the handover sheets this is achieved. Several prompts on both the Patient Care Board and the handover sheet including ‘mobility’, ‘toileting’, ‘shower’, ‘diet’ and ‘other’ are used. A local procedure has been adopted and provides an effective quick guide on any restrictions or instructions for the patient in these areas. 
Families and patients are also encouraged to write any requests and questions on the Patient Care Board which is patient centred care.

​Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol Productive Nursing Administration

The Bloomfield Hospital Nursing Administration team ensure the safety of consumers. They understand that consumers and staff should be engaged and involved in all facets of the delivery of care. The team understand that clinical governance systems and plans provides better outcomes. A focus on continuous improvement and a culture of safety also helps them in the delivery of care.

​Coping in a crisis

It was evident throughout 2020 that the Public Health Unit (PHU) are a team that is reliable and resilient, the ability to pivot and respond to the emerging global pandemic was unprecedented and one that highlighted the PHU as a high-performing team. The work demonstrated throughout the pandemic reflects how the team ensures patient safety, implements a process of constant quality improvement and without a doubt demonstrates their reliability and resilience.

​Share the Care

The Canowindra Health Service have weekly Structured Interdisciplinary Bedside Rounds (SIBR), with Visiting Medical Officers (VMOs), nursing staff (acute and community) and allied health present with the patient. The meeting is documented into EMR and updates to the patient care board occurs during each discussion.
The aim was to have 90% of patients involved in their care by having SIBR at bedside by April 2020. This aim was achieved, and over the past 12 months they have continued to make changes in response to feedback to improve patient experience, improve reliability and quality of care, and ensure we were partnering with our patients and their families.

​Orange Pharmacy

The Orange Hospital Pharmacy team have championed Living Quality and Safety by providing safe patient care in regards to medication, displaying reliability and resilience, continuously improving our processes and partnering with our patients and their carers to improve their knowledge and understanding of their medication.
The team respects the unique roles we all play in contributing to patient safety. We have developed strong ties with the multidisciplinary teams through open communication, respect and a shared and transparent goal of improving patient outcomes.​


Thank you to our partners

Symposium Gold Partner

The University of Sydney – School of Rural Health (Dubbo/Orange)


The School of Rural Health has been offering year-long rural placements to medical students from the University of Sydney for 20 years. Many of our local clinicians came back to work in the region after a year at the School when they discovered the benefits of living and working in a thriving regional community.​

In 2022 we will begin offering the entire four years of the Sydney Medical Program in Dubbo at our School in Moran Drive. Our focus will be on attracting local rural people so they can study a world-class medical program in their own community and hopefully stay and work in the region. Building works are well under way and when completed later this year will include a learning environment that uses the latest technology in teaching anatomy, diverse learning and study spaces and a large simulation training centre. The new medical school is part of the Commonwealth government’s Murray Darling Medical Schools Network. 


Other Symposium Partners​​​​



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​Gala Awards Dinner Platinum Partner​

SalaryPackagingPLUS: Your Salary Packaging Partner


SalaryPackagingPLUS​ has spent nearly two decades helping public health employees take advantage of salary packaging opportunities by focusing on employee outcomes - not on expensive, complex or inflexible systems.

We care about customer experience which is why we’ve created salary packaging processes that minimise confusion and respect the value of our customers’ time - giving us the opportunity to focus on exceptional customer service and support.  To us being a ‘partner’ means listening to employees and helping every public health sector worker build an individual benefit platform that takes full advantage of their salary packaging opportunities.     

We’re proud of how easy and effective our salary packaging solution is – it’s what sets us apart and defines our mission: to help all employees increase their pay with a minimum of fuss (and a maximum of support).  

More and more employees are using SalaryPackagingPLUS every day to maximise their take-home pay – but we won’t be satisfied until everyone benefits from the salary packaging opportunity!

As part of their sponsorship SalaryPackagingPLUS also sponsors the People's Choice and the Transforming the Patient Experience Awards.


Gala Awards Dinner Silver Partner​

Philips


Philips believes in innovating healthcare solutions across the continuum of care to improve patient outcomes, provide better value, and expand access to care. Globally, Philips has invested in the future of healthcare driving better collaboration amongst healthcare professionals focused on the individual patient. Philips Population Health division brings a comprehensive suite of interconnected platforms to improve measurable health outcomes. Holistically, the suite is designed to analyse, navigate and activate patients continuously throughout the care journey. Philips is also a pioneer in Virtual Care with a 20-year track record covering both inpatient and outpatient virtual care programs. Via our clinical partners like WNSWLHD, we have improved experience of care and driven continuous operational excellence in the hospital, mental health and primary care settings.

As part of their sponsorship Phillips also sponsors the Integrated Valued Based Care Award.

​Individual Award Partners




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