The nurses who work at a rural Queensland hospital are about to get their own personal touches from their nurses, thanks to a new programme called ‘Make It Your Own’.
It’s designed to help people who need help in remote areas, and is being rolled out across the country.
Key points: ”We’re all a bit more vulnerable than we’d like to admit,” said one volunteer at the hospital, who wished to remain anonymous.
“The biggest challenge we face in remote communities is people are still trying to get by and we’re just too reliant on the system to get out of bed.”
The program has been running in rural communities in the Pilbara for the past three years, with the aim of getting more nurses and volunteers to become involved in the care of the local population.
The program is being run by the Remote Nurse Association of Queensland (RNAQ), which works with the local health authority and regional councils.
The nurse’s personal touch can be a blessing or a curse.
“[I told her] ‘I know it can be very scary to do that, but I’ll just do it’.””
I’ve been doing it for years, and she’s been in it for six months, and so far it’s been really helpful.” “
[I told her] ‘I know it can be very scary to do that, but I’ll just do it’.”
I’ve been doing it for years, and she’s been in it for six months, and so far it’s been really helpful.
“Volunteers who have done a ‘make it your own’ task, like a baby’s crib, or a sick child’s blanket, have been offered a personal touch by the nurse.
RNAQueried has also set up a website where residents can provide feedback on how their community is progressing.
But the program has also sparked a backlash from those who say it is a cynical attempt to manipulate the people who work there.
In a letter to RNAQ chairwoman Sue MacNeil, local health worker Michelle Waddell said she was not sure it was a good idea to involve nurses who could not provide personal touch, or who were not locals.
”I’m a nurse myself and I’ve never seen it used as a way to manipulate anyone or try to take advantage of people,” Ms Waddall said.
”I think it’s a bit of a bit disingenuous that we’re being used as bait.
‘Make it your OWN’ was developed by RNAQuers, who have been helping remote areas with community health issues since the 1970s.
We have some of the highest mortality rates in the country, so it’s important that we continue to get the support of the community and that people get the best support possible,” he said.