NSLHD News May 20 2022

Get the latest news from across Northern Sydney Local Health District.


Main story Short blurb NSLHD Celebrates International Nurses Day Nurses and midwives across the district took part in celebrations on International Nurses Day and International Day of the Midwife. Pages 4 and 5 Read more on Page x

Clinical Trials Day Page 6

Hornsby’s Parkinson’s disease clinic celebrates one year Page 7


Message from the board chair Trevor Danos AM

This week I had the great pleasure of visiting Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital to meet with staff and assessors from the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards (ACHS) as the hospital goes through its accreditation. A great deal of work goes into the preparation for a hospital’s accreditation which provides public recognition of the achievement of accreditation standards through an independent external peer assessment of a hospital’s performance. Hornsby Hospital staff have been working incredibly hard in recent weeks to prepare for accreditation to ensure the external surveyors get to see what we all know – Hornsby Hospital staff are a wonderful group of people who constantly strive to give the very best care to their local community. I wish all Hornsby Hospital staff the very best during the accreditation process. You should all be very proud of what you do. With accreditation at Royal North Shore also happening very soon I appreciate it is a very busy time for you all and I thank you for your continued hard work. I am really pleased to see great progress is being made on the development of the NSLHD Strategic Plan 2022-2027 which will guide the direction of our health services over the next five years and articulate how we will achieve our goals, leverage opportunities and add to our existing strengths. We have already received fantastic engagement from a broad range of staff from across our hospitals and services. Twelve all-staff virtual consultation workshops have already been held. Staff can still provide their input by completing

the survey available on the Strategic Plan section on the Intranet. Importantly, we have also held a number of targeted consultation sessions with our culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD), carer, consumer, youth and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health representatives. Our community are also invited to input into the development of our Strategic Plan through a community and consumer survey which is available at this link https://bit. ly/39AZg1I and will be promoted widely. The feedback we have received so far has been really useful and informative and some clear themes are already emerging. Investing in planetary health and sustainability is among one of the top priorities as is our investment in our digital future. The COVID-19 pandemic has been immensely challenging and we know the wellbeing of our staff is so very important. The pandemic has also shown us some new innovative ways of working that benefit staff and patients and should continue into the future. These emerging themes and others that arise throughout the consolation process will be included in the draft Strategic Plan which is expected to be available for final comment in June 2022, before it goes to the Board in August 2022. I would like to thank all those who have contributed to this important plan to ensure we continue to deliver high-quality healthcare for our consumers and patients into the future. Trevor Danos AM Board Chair Northern Sydney Local Health District



NSLHD staff celebrating Administrative Professionals Day

Administrative Professionals Day Earlier this month administrative employees across the district celebrated National Administrative Professionals Day.

information. NSLHD Chief Executive Deb Willcox joined staff members for part of the day and thanked attendees for always going above and beyond for fellow staff members. “The support you offer with a smile means so much to all of us – and over the past two years, when our professional lives, and sometimes personal lives, have been manic, you have always been there,” she said. “You go above and beyond in your service and your support is greatly appreciated.” medication list. The project will focus on the top five languages based on the proportion of speakers and their English proficiency across NSLHD. The translated version of the medication list will contain both English and a translated language. The translated medication list will also include translated warning statements regularly placed on medications to promote the understanding of the warning statements by CALD patients. Translated medication lists will be released by the end of this month.

The day is celebrated on the first Friday of May and celebrates our administrative staff members and recognises their achievements. The day gives administrative employees a chance to have a say on their careers, as well as undergo professional development and provide a networking opportunity. On the day, two sessions were conducted at the Kolling Building on the Royal North Shore Hospital campus and featured guest speakers, masterclasses and development

Improving medication safety for CALD patients Medication lists used to give patients information on the medications they are taking will soon be translated into languages

to promote safety in the culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) patients. The NSLHD electronic medication management (eMM) team is working on the Multilingual Medication List project that aims to provide CALD patients with a translated medication list to improve their understanding of their medications and increase patient safety. Currently pharmacy departments across NSW use an English version of the


Share your news and achievements. Contact our team on 9463 1722 or email NSLHD-media@health.nsw.gov.au to submit your news.



Ryde Hospital Director of Nursing and Midwifery Alecia Daly with Ryde’s Nurse of the Year Shirley Honeywell

Royal North Shore Hospital nurses receive a hamper

NSLHD Celebrates International Nurses Day Hampers, lunch, awards

staff competed in their own Amazing Race style event, with the Severe Burns Unit (SBU) prevailing as tough competition, taking home the trophy for the second year in a row at RNSH. The Urgent Care Centre took out the prize at Mona Vale. Staff at Ryde Hospital were treated to a breakfast for those on night duty, and lunch for those on day and afternoon shifts. Nurses at Hornsby Hospital received a range of hampers, plants and food platters to mark the occasion. Nursing and midwifery awards ceremonies were

held across the district presenting nurse of the year and team of the year, amongst other award winners. NSLHD Director of Nursing and Midwifery Claire Harris said: “It was great to see the Northern nursing spirit on this day! Congratulations to all award winners and to all of our nurses across NSLHD for your achievements over the past year. Thank you for your ongoing commitment to providing high quality care, and for making this district a leader across the state.”

and games brought in this year’s International Nurses Day celebrations for nurses across the district on 12 May. International Nurses Day is an important day on the calendar every year to recognise the commitment of our nurses and the amazing care they provide to patients. Celebrations across NSLHD this year included an array of awards, food and games in what was a well-deserved day of recognition for nurses across the district. Royal North Shore Hospital and Mona Vale Hospital

RNSH Team of the Year winners - Ward 8D

4 NSLHDNEWS | ISSUE 9 | 20 MAY 2022

Hornsby award winner of the Year winner Simon Zhang with Hornsby Hospital’s Director of Nursing and Midwifery Drew Hilditch-Roberts

Ryde Hospital celebrates International Nurses Day

(Left to right): Nurse Manager Performance and Access Esther Ng, Ryde Hospital Director of Nursing and Midwifery Alecia Daly, and Team of the Year award winners

Mona Vale’s Hospital’s Urgent Care Centre were the Mona Vale Amazing Race winners

MHDA Director Andrea Taylor, Nurse Unit Manager Wendy Guy representing award winners Lavender House and MHDA Director of Nursing Mark Joyce

Mental Health Drug and Alcohol award winners and finalists

Mona Vale Hospital’s Nurse of the Year winner with Director Nursing and Midwifery Claire Harris

Nurse Unit Manager 5E, Rose Hills and Graduate of the Year winner Marian Yarow



RNSH CNC presents poster on the world stage Royal North Shore Hospital Clinical Nurse Consultant Elsa Chu has recently had

B vaccine to inhibit the spreading of the disease. “No woman should have to live with the lifetime of guilt from having passed on hepatitis B to their child,” she said. “No child should be born with a life-limiting disease when there is a vaccine available. “We know the prevention of mother-to-child transmission is crucial in reducing the incidence of hepatitis B and can be achieved through maternal antiviral therapy and postnatal active and passive immunisation.” Elsa is committed to the Therapeutics in 2016 for her work on gene therapy. Linda said recognising days like Clinical Trials Day is important for not only achieving desired patient outcomes but also encouraging participation through awareness. “A clinical trial could be something simple that gives people hope – we all want hope,” she said. “It’s also important to note that clinical trials are there for healthy people as well as sick people.” Like Linda, Associate Professor Anthony Delaney said seeing the outcomes of clinical trials makes all of the hard work worth it. “The most enjoyable part is seeing the results of the trial being used across the world to help clinicians provide better care for patients,” he said. Anthony, who is currently working on the Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Haemorrhage, red blood cell transfusion and outcome (SAHaRA) trial to help evaluate stroke treatment options, said the COVID-19 pandemic was a huge learning curve for those conducting

her poster accepted and presented at The World Hepatitis Summit 2022. Elsa’s poster is themed around post-vaccination serological outcomes for infants born to women infected with hepatitis B. The poster has been presented and accepted in four conferences throughout 2021 and 2022. Elsa said her motivation for constructing the poster was her passion for helping raise awareness of the hepatitis Clinical Trials Day International Clinical Trials Day takes place on May 20 each year to celebrate and recognise the significant efforts of those who conduct clinical trials. The day provides an opportunity to acknowledge some of the achievements of clinical trials and research as well as emphasising the importance of clinical trials for improved patient outcomes. Royal North Shore Hospital Research Nurse Linda Pallot recently celebrated her 50 year anniversary in nursing, with 25 of those years being spent as a research nurse working on clinical trials. Linda said becoming a research nurse has allowed her to work on some life altering trials for patients. “Being a research nurse is a wonderful career, testing new drugs or devices is ground breaking work,” she said. “Some of the trials I worked on for Multiple Sclerosis went to market and have now become current treatments.” Alongside getting to work and care for her patients, a highlight of Linda’s career was being awarded a Cure the Future Service Award for

Elsa Chu with her poster

global fight against viral hepatitis and wants to play her role in helping eliminate the disease. “I always want to be at the forefront of the global fight against viral hepatitis, and I intend to play a key role in the historic elimination of the disease,” she said.

RNSH Research Nurse Linda Pallot

clinical trials. “While COVID has led to many challenges for intensive care units, it did speed up the use of novel clinical trial methods that delivered results much quicker than previous methods, and so we were able to introduce treatments that saved many lives,” he said. Speaking on the importance Clinical Trials Day, Anthony said raising awareness around participation is one of the key factors in achieving trial results that can save lives. “We can’t complete clinical trials without the patients being willing to be involved,” he said. “The more people that understand the benefits that can arise from clinical trials, hopefully the more willing they will be to consider participating in a clinical trial.”



No gong – but Amanda still feels like a winner When Royal North Shore Hospital Pharmacy Technician Amanda Pollak was she said. “I’ve done many different

patients – no one comes to hospital for fun,” she said. “Our job is to help make sure patients have access to the medications they need, either dispensed to the patient or supplied through the ADC. Pharmacy assistants and technicians make sure this gets done safely and efficiently because at the end of the day we’re here for the patient.” “I also genuinely enjoy spending time with people from my department – learning from them, working with them, teaching them – they’re very supportive.”

roles within our department, learnt different processes and developed management skills which prepared me for my current role.” Amanda’s can-do attitude held her in good stead last year, when she helped Northern Sydney Local Health District roll out the COVID-19 vaccine. “I really enjoyed that because I was making a difference. At a time that was really very hard for a lot of people in different ways – I felt like I was able to make things a little bit easier,” she said. “I’d go home and think ‘I’m exhausted, but I’ve really made a difference today’ and that’s really important.” In fact – there is only one thing Amanda cannot do; choose the favourite part of her job. “One of the things I like the most is that I am helping

treating local residents with Parkinson’s disease or those suspected of having the illness. The clinic has seen 50 patients with 68 neurologist follow ups, 89 nurse follow ups, and three patients commenced on advanced therapy. The clinic was a first for Hornsby when it opened this time last year with neurologists and a dedicated Parkinson’s disease nurse seeing patients. Parkinson’s Clinical Nurse Consultant Suliana Manuofetoa said the team has nominated as a finalist in the Excellence in Allied Health Awards, it’s fair to say she was happy. “It was a total surprise – I didn’t even know, but it was very exciting,” she said. “I felt elated – I felt really honoured and special.” While Amanda did not go on to take out the Technician of the Year category, it was a proud moment for her and the department which has helped foster her talent and enthusiasm. Her current position as the automatic dispensing cabinet (ADC) manager used around the hospital, is the latest in a string of roles Amanda has held since starting as an assistant at the hospital 10 years ago. “This is a really good department to grow in – there’s lots of opportunity,”

RNSH Pharmacy Technician Amanda Pollak

Hornsby’s Parkinson’s disease clinic celebrates one year One year on from its opening and Hornsby Hospital’s neurology Parkinson’s disease outpatient clinic is busy been receiving great feedback from patients and their carers about the service. “The Hornsby Ku-ring-gai district has the highest

number of people living with Parkinson’s in NSW,” Suliana said. “It’s important for people living with Parkinson’s disease and their carers to know they are not alone. “There are many support services available, including our clinic and Parkinson’s rehabilitation clinic, that will enable people living with Parkinson’s disease to live well and improve their quality of life.” The clinic can diagnose Parkinson’s disease in new patients, conduct physical

Some of the PD clinic team outside Hornsby Hospital

examinations, check medications and update treatment plans. The clinic also provides access to highly advanced Parkinson’s therapies, and complements the existing Parkinson’s rehabilitation clinic at the hospital.




If you’re grateful for the care

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have received at one of our

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making a tax-deductible gift to

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Within the NSLHD, providing a good patient experience is at the

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d often this goes beyond just

immediate medical care.

For us, the general wellbeing, rehabilitation and mental health of

everyone is just as important as the medical treatment we provide.

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