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Thursday, 5 May 2005

Flying the Flags for International Nurses Day

At a time when demand for specialist nurses is outstripping supply, Sydney Children’s Hospital at Randwick is having very few problems recruiting and retaining experienced staff.

Director of Nursing Phyllis Moran believes this for two reasons: Sydney Children’s Hospital’s enviable reputation as a family friendly work environment and, its international recruitment programme.

“Since 2002, the government has given visa applications for nurses priority processing. From our hospital’s total nursing workforce of over 430, an estimated 70% come from places as varied as Ireland, UK, South Africa, Canada, America and Singapore,” said Moran.

Arriving in Australia six weeks ago, Audrey Comerford from Ireland has just completed her first month within the Children’s Intensive Care Unit. With specialised skills acquired over a six year paediatric nursing career in Ireland and Scotland, and a sponsorship visa arranged via the hospital, the 30 year old has enjoyed being able to take her career to the other side of the world.

“The great thing about children’s intensive care nursing is that due to a worldwide shortage there is very high demand. If you maintain a certain level of skill, you can transfer anywhere.”

Comerford could only praise the hospital’s personalised recruitment process, “They were very supportive, all the paperwork needed was presented to you, and it was highly efficient.”

“The fantastic thing is that the hospital not only recognises my previous skills and experience, but it is also aware of the needs and extra support that is needed for those who have come from overseas. I have been made to feel most welcome.”

International Nurses Day is on Thursday 12 May.

For Further Information Contact:

Iain Robinson, Public Affairs Department on (02) 9382 3571 or 0404 001 722.



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