NSLHD News September 26

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


Macquarie Hospital celebrates 60 years

Staff, consumers and guests gathered to celebrate Macquarie’s 60th birthday as well as th opening of

its tranquility garden. Read more on Page 5


nslhd launches research strategy Page 3

Leaders in healthcare, partners in wellbeing


message FROM the Chief executive Deb Willcox

There has been much to celebrate in the district recently from innovations to anniversaries and launches, and the focus, as always, has been the great care and outcomes of our patients and consumers and the achievements of staff. NSLHD has a long and proud history of being leaders in research, and the launch of the Research Strategy 2019 – 2024 provides us with the opportunity to continue to build on our existing research strengths, support our research endeavours and further establish the district as a research- orientated organisation. I would like to thank all the staff and consumer representatives who have contributed their time and expertise to develop the strategy. I am confident it will deliver on our goal of being a high-performing research organisation that provides best practice healthcare and improves the wellbeing of our community, today and into the future. I encourage all of you to take the time to view the NSLHD Research Strategy and the NSLHD Research Strategy video which can be found on the NSLHD website homepage. A fabulous day was had by more than 100 guests, consumers and staff who came to the Macquarie Hospital’s 60th birthday celebrations. The chapel service, led by the consumers, was warm and heartfelt and encapsulated the spirit of all the wonderful people who make up the hospital’s fabric. Macquarie Hospital has a rich history in NSW for treating consumers with mental health issues and it was lovely to see past and present staff and consumers attend to mark the significant anniversary. I had the pleasure of attending the launch

of Ask the Question campaign, designed to deliver culturally appropriate care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The Ask the Question animation is a video aimed at encouraging all staff across NSLHD to understand the importance of identification of consumers and clients of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin. It’s all a part of the District’s Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol team’s efforts with assistance from the Aboriginal Health Unit to understand the importance of asking the question as it is medically relevant. I encourage you to have a look at the great animated video on the NSLHD website homepage. Finally, I would like to thank everyone involved in the development of the Health Information Exchange (HIE) which has gone live. This is the first system of its kind enabling the sharing of key patient information between the Electronic Medical Records systems at NSLHD and Northern Beaches Hospital. This is a fantastic achievement and great collaboration between the district, Healthscope, eHealth NSW and Health Infrastructure. Thank you to all involved and a special thanks to the hundreds of clinicians who worked with us on this project to ensure we provide excellent patient care.

Deb Willcox Chief Executive Northern Sydney Local Health District


National project director of the A3BC Craig Willers, Head of Clinical Genetics at Royal North Shore Clinical Associate Professor Yemima ‘Mimi’ Berman wth NSLHD Chief Executive Deb Willcox and NORTH Foundation Chief Executive Gilbert Lorquet

district launches research strategy Research and innovation took centre stage when NSLHD launched its first ever Research Strategy this month.

“It will build on the existing foundation of research excellence to deliver a targeted, inclusive and coherent plan for research over the next five years.” Deb thanked the staff and consumer representatives involved for their time and expertise, saying it would ultimately benefit everyone, especially patients. “I am confident it will deliver on our goal of being a high-performing research organisation that provides best practice healthcare and improves the wellbeing of our community, today and into the future,” she said.

The plan, which covers the years 2019-2024, was the result of extensive consultation between experts from across the district. Research strategy and partnerships manager Rebeka Tennent helped drive the process, which was made a priority by Chief Executive Deb Willcox. “This strategy is the culmination of almost a year of consultation,” she said. “We gathered the thoughts and opinions of more than 200 stakeholders throughout the district, including researchers, consumers, executive and our community. “We held several workshops, undertook surveys and eventually sent a draft strategy out for comment.” Rebeka said the completed plan was testament to the district’s drive to improve its efforts in research across the board. “It is indicative of the commitment of the district to improve the health and wellbeing of our community through ensuring healthcare is underpinned by research,” she said.

For more information, visit bit.ly/2mpwust

Reading online? Click here to watch our Research video and read the Strategy.




Staff involved with the Ask the Question animation celebrate its launch

A new campaign designed to deliver culturally appropriate care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples has been unveiled by Northern Sydney Local Health District. The Ask the Question animation is a video aimed at encouraging all staff across NSLHD to understand the importance of identification of consumers and clients of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin. Attendees experienced Aboriginal culture from the very start with a range of delicious food from the Meat Brothers’ Corey Grech, while MC Marlene Cummins treated the crowd to some acapella jazz. Dancers from Koomurri shared their art, even inviting some of the braver crowd members to learn how it’s done. The focus then turned to the first play of the animation, which was an initiative from the District’s Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol team’s efforts with assistance from the Aboriginal Health Unit.

NSLHD Clinical Lead for Aboriginal Mental Health Drug and Alcohol Michelle Lawrence led the campaign with the aim of increasing the amount of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people identifying at NSLHD. “The omission of culture in providing care can leave our people feeling disrespected and without adequate support, which means they are less likely to seek future treatment,” she said. “Asking the question allows Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples access to a range of specialist services such as Bungee Bidgel, our Aboriginal health clinic at Hornsby, mental health services, or to receive more appropriately tailored care in the hospital environment.” The animation, which will be used in staff orientation and training as well as in public areas throughout the district, was produced in consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

MC Marlene Cummins and Deb Willcox.

Kevin McKenzie and Corey Grech from Meat Brothers.


Macquarie celebrates 60 years A wonderful day was had by guests, staff and consumers who attended the 60th birthday celebrations of Macquarie Hospital. festivities which involved a service in the chapel, led by consumers who gave readings, lit candles and sang hymns. Special guests included former Governor of NSW, Professor Marie Bashir, Alzheimer’s Australia NSW Chief Executive John Watkins (AM) as well as NSLHD Chief Executive Deb Willcox. A newly landscaped tranquillity garden was unveiled where people can sit and enjoy a quiet moment while on the campus. More than 100 people turned out for the

Celebrations for the birthday were held in the chapel at Macquarie Hospital.

Professor Marie Bashir and consumer Kathy McDonald

Deb Willcox, Susanne Russell and Maureen Fechter

Former NSW Governor Professor Marie Bashir



RYDE HOSPITAL NURSE HONOURED WITH TOP STROKE AWARD Ryde Hospital’s Sandra Lever has been awarded the Stroke Foundation and Stroke Society of Australasia 2019 Stroke Care Champion Award for her extraordinary dedication and commitment to stroke.

Clinical Nurse Consultant Sandra has dedicated her working life to supporting patients to live well after stroke. This includes recognising stroke recovery extends well beyond learning to walk and talk again. Sandra has a particular interest in patient relationships and intimacy after stroke. Ms Lever said it was a great honour to receive the award, which was presented by former Governor- General of Australia and Stroke Foundation Patron General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK AC (Mil) CVO MC (Retd) at a special event at Federal Parliament House as part of Stroke 2019: New frontiers in Stroke Conference. “I am so fortunate to love the work that I do and being recognised with this award inspires me to continue working towards making a positive difference in stroke rehabilitation care,” Ms Lever said. time in anyone’s life, but a new patient TV station at Royal North Shore is looking to change that. Get Well Sooner is the brain child of consultation liaison psychiatry Clinical Nurse Consultant Suzy Russell, with support from Psychiatrist Dr Caryl Barnes and general medicine CNC Vanya Ripley. It all started when the team won the Innovation Program in June. “I am thrilled and amazed that the TV wellness channel is now a reality,” Suzy said. “I hope that if a patient in the hospital is feeling stressed or anxious they may switch channels and try some of the relaxation strategies that are on the channel.” The station is live on channel 304 of the bedside TVs and aims to keep patients relaxed with a series of mindfulness videos and tips from staff on how to make their stay as smooth as possible. “I know that this would not have been possible without the support of the many people I work with

Sandra Lever with partner David Hind, cllecting her 2019 Stroke Foundation and Stroke Society of Australasia Stroke Care Award

who are also passionate and enthusiastic about improving the lives of stroke survivors.”

In being nominated for the award, Ms Lever was described as someone who is a strong advocate for stroke survivors and dedicated to driving improvements in stroke rehabilitation at a local, state and national level. A clinician, researcher and teacher, Ms Lever is known for her passion and enthusiasm to empower others to deliver best practice, evidence-based care.

Wellness TV CHANnEL GOES LIVE AT RNSH Being admitted to hospital can be a stressful

Suzy Russell, Dr Carol Barnes and Vanya Ripley at the launch of Royal North Shore Hospital Wellness Channel.

The channel is also subject to a three month feasibility study on Ward 9A where it will be evaluated by the patients so the project team can improve and lengthen the content in the future.


NSLHD Chief Executive Deb Willcox, Dr Brendan Steinfort, NORTH Foundation CEO Gilbert Lorquet, patient Penny Clarke and Foundation Board Chair Greg Isaacs

new direction as north foundation launches The NORTH Foundation has been officially launched with a bold vision to enhance

NSLHD Chief Executive Deb Willcox said the NORTH Foundation will play a key role in broadening community awareness of our services and impressive staff. “A greater understanding of what we do and our unique strengths will help the foundation meet its goals. I encourage all our staff to take the opportunity to talk with patients about the role of the foundation,” Deb said. Patient Penny Clarke also addressed the official launch, sharing her recent experience at RNSH. Penny suffered a stroke after an international flight where she slept in an uncomfortable position and dissected an artery. “I’m tremendously grateful for the specialised care I received and the quality of life I now have after the stroke,” Penny said. “I have fully recovered and I’m able to enjoy so many things. I would urge everyone to support the foundation and help boost the health services within the district.”

healthcare services across the district and increase investment in world-leading medical research. Formerly the Kolling Foundation, the NORTH Foundation is the fundraising partner for the hospitals and services of NSLHD and the Kolling Institute of Medical Research. Chief Executive Officer Gilbert Lorquet has unveiled the foundation’s new look and five-year plan to bolster healthcare services across the district. support, we will be well placed to enhance services, provide additional equipment and increase our investment in cutting edge research,” he said. “We are committed to becoming a major contributor to world class medical research and strengthening a community health system where people enjoy excellent care throughout their lives.” “With the help of generous donors, corporate partners and community



Nursing & Midwifery Research Centre


Friday 11 th October 2019 8.15 am to 4.15 pm Auditorium, Level 5 Kolling Building, RNSH

A unique event to inspire and inform all NSLHD clinical staff

Morning session (8.30 am to 12.30 pm) What every health care professional needs to know: Going back to the essentials to provide exceptional patient care Ms Kathleen Vollman, Clinical Nurse Specialist/Consultant, Advancing Nursing LLC

Part 1 – The future is now: strategies for creating a culture of safety Part 2 – Evidence-based care for eliminating hospital acquired conditions

Afternoon sessions Wellness at work

2.15 pm to 3.00 pm Cultivating compassion at work Dr Samantha Jakimowicz Lecturer Faculty of Health University of Technology Sydney

3.15 pm to 4.00 pm Vicarious trauma Ms Louise Sayers ICU Staff Support & Bereavement Co-ordinator Royal North Shore Hospital

1.30 pm to 2.15 pm Cultivating wellness at work (and in life) Dr Rosalind Elliott Translational Research Co-ordinator – Clinical Nurse Consultant, Nursing & Midwifery Directorate, NSLHD

Self-enrol via My Health Learning by Friday 4 th October (course no. 258947313) Enquiries: Claire Dunn 9926 4685 or Claire.Dunn@health.nsw.gov.au

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