NT is Calling You

The NT Government is offering positions for Registered Nurses in Darwin and Palmerston Hospital. See link for further information.

Australian Emergency Department Statistics 2016-17

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released its 2016-2017 statistics. This is available at

2018 ACEN Course Dates

Australian College of Nursing has released the current 2018 course dates. Look at ACEN Courses for your course in your state or preferred city. ACEN currently offers the recently updated TNCC – Trauma Nurse Core Course, ENPC – Emergency Nursing Paediatric Course, ITLS – International Trauma Life Support, and the PTLS – Paediatric Trauma Life Support. Contact ACEN for further information and booking.

Invitation to Participate in Research Study Survey on Medication Errors

Why is the research being conducted?
Interruptions have been found to be associated with medication administration errors, leading to interventions aimed at reducing or eliminating interruptions. However, nurses have been observed to have different ways of managing interruptions that do not involve the reduction or elimination of interruptions. Nurses have also been found to define interruptions differently compared to researchers. Therefore, the purpose of this research is to understand how nurses define and manage interruptions, as well as their perception of current interruption-handling interventions. This project is conducted by researchers from both the Safety Science Innovation Lab at Griffith University and Cognitive Engineering Research Group at the University of Queensland.
The link to the survey is
Please contact If participants have any queries or if they seek further information, they can contact Jonathan Gao e-mail:

Invitation to Participate in Research
This is a invitation to participate in research through the University of the Sunshine Coast Queensland. Titled ‘Exploring the uptake of the Baby Friendly Health Initiative in Australia’. Ethics approval number: S/15/806 The aim of this research is to improve knowledge about current uptake and implementation of the BFHI in Australia. The survey will help us better understand the issues relating to the uptake and implementation of the BFHI in Australia. This information can be used to improve the uptake and implementation of the BFHI at national and local levels. Please click on this link to access our survey and tell us what you believe is happening in relation to the uptake and implementation of the BFHI in Australia. The survey should only take 10-15 minutes to complete. This survey will be open from (27/06/2017) until (22/11/2017). For further information please contact Anahita Esbati e-mail
Photos from Kiribati Emergency Nurse Training Program
Tekateke, Temarean & Mayrose simulating paediatric resuscitation
Tebwaiti, Oteniera, Tebwelisa & Nikoatetoka perform adult resuscitation.
Celia assessing the spine, Teinaura providing inline immobilisation for the C-spine, Oteniera, Lisa & Tebwaiti assisting with log roll.
Tebwelisa inserting a cannula into 2nd ICS MCL for needle decompression of pneumothorax
Terry checking circulation obs after splinting Teitinana. Celia, Bee, Tebwaiti & Kakoroa in the background
The students after everyone passed the final exams
Left to right…
Front – Teitiana, Temarean, Tekateke, Nikoatetoka, Mayrose, Bee, Angie & Bron.
Back – Teoraiti (PNO), Oteniera, Teinaura, Tebwelisa, Celia, Benny, Terry, Telangalulu, Teretia, Kakoroa, Tebwaiti, Maile, Tatiku
Happy graduates
Left to Right…
Back – Teoraiti (PNO), Baaua (DDON), Tanebu (Dr), Sister Benny, Sister Terry, Teitinana (NUM), Kakoroa, Oteniera, Telengalulu, Teinaura 
Middle – Tareti (Principal of Nursing School), Pia (PNO), Maile, Temarean, Celia, Mayrose, Tekateke, Tebwelisa, Tebwaiti
Front – Tatiku, Bron, Nikoatetoka, AngieBack – Teoraiti (PNO), Oteniera, Teinaura, Tebwelisa, Celia, Benny, Terry, Telangalulu, Teretia, Kakoroa, Tebwaiti, Maile, Tatiku
Baaua (DDON) and Helen (DON) at the graduation ceremony

Kiribati Emergency Nurse Training Program

Kiribati is a nation of scattered islands spread across 3.5 million square kilometres of the Central Pacific. The main island of South Tarawa, a long thin atoll of roughly 15 square kilometres, holds almost half of the country’s 100,000 people, with a population density similar to Hong Kong, but very little infrastructure.Tungaru Central Hospital (TCH), the country’s largest referral hospital, is one of the country’s only providers of tertiary care, and sees large numbers of high acuity patients both from South Tarawa, and the Outer Islands.

The busy emergency department, as the gateway to the rest of the hospital, is consistently at or over its capacity of around 20 beds, however until very recently there have been no permanent nurses assigned to the area except the Nurse Unit Manager. A systemic shortage of nurses in Kiribati requires constant rotation of nurses to cover staffing gaps. This has prevented the development of specialised skills in any areas except midwifery. The Kiribati Emergency Nurse Training Program has marked a break in this tradition, with a recognition that the needs of the Emergency Department require a stable cohort of nursing staff with appropriate skills.

The Program
The Kiribati Emergency Nurse Training program was developed in consultation with core staff while working in the ED during a month long volunteer visit to support a medical training program in 2016.

The Australian College of Emergency Nursing has taken a leadership role in endorsing the course and accrediting the program for 80 hours of CPD points. This is the first step in a long term vision for a post graduate pathway in specialised emergency training for nurses in Kiribati.

Funding for the program was obtained in partnership with Australian FACEM Dr Brady Tassicker via the International Development Fund Grant (IDFG) branch of the Australasian College of Emergency Medicine (ACEM). This has been a very positive exercise in nursing and medicine collaborating to achieve shared goals, as Brady spent a year in 2016 supporting the medical capacity of the department at TCH. The course content included the Basic Emergency Care Course (BEC) recently developed by Dr Teri Reynolds at WHO. This covers an introduction to a structured ABCDE assessment and treatment of life threatening conditions.

Supporting material was designed and written both to provide background to the BEC content, and to specifically address issues relevant to the Kiribati emergency nursing environment, including acute local presentations such as fish poisoning and in depth coverage of NCD’s. The nurses were also taught the use of ISBAR to facilitate effective handover and escalation of clinical concerns.

The format of both course components included theoretical and practical sessions, taught three days per week for three weeks and assessed via both written and practical exam.

The Participants
Sixteen nurses who had expressed a keenness to develop emergency skills and remain in this area long term were chosen to participate, in consultation with the Nurse Unit Managers and the Principal Nursing Officers responsible for rostering. This included 12 nurses from Tungaru Central Hospital and 4 from Betio, the smaller hospital at the other end of South Tarawa.

These 16 nurses will form the core group of Emergency nurses that are retained permanently in the ED environment, with future rotation only occurring between the 2 emergency departments.

Two further places were created at the request of the principal of the Nursing School to enable two lecturers to participate and thus create a benefit for the next generation of young I-Kiribati nurses.

Despite the difficulties of removing 16 nurses from what is already very tight rostering, the PNO’s ensured that all the nurses were able to attend every one of the education days. The nurses worked hard to fit their shifts around the study days and many worked afternoon shifts after full days of lessons as well as weekends and night shifts. Many nurses also had families and babies or young children to care for as well.

The nursing staff fostered a wonderful environment of mutual support and encouragement throughout the course, which is an extension of the strong teamwork that is practiced in both hospitals.

The trajectory of theoretical and practical skill development measured over the course was universally impressive. Pre and post testing demonstrated dramatic changes, and on completion all students received either Distinction or High Distinction.

The graduation ceremony was a wonderful celebration of the effort the nurses put into the course and the results of their achievements. The graduation was supported and attended by a wide representation of hospital administration, the doctor in charge of the ED – Dr Tanebu and the Permanent Secretary from the Ministry of Health, who awarded the certificates.

Looking Ahead
This program was Part 1 of an anticipated 2 Part course. The second part of this course will see the introduction of training and mentoring in Triage skills. Although there are some infrastructures challenges before Triage can be introduced, the momentum is there to facilitate this happening. Both the nurses and the hospital administration are enthusiastic and committed to ongoing nursing development in Kiribati.

From a chance encounter in 2015 with Dr Brady Tassicker at the International Emergency Care conference at the Alfred in Melbourne, this program has evolved in a way that neither of us could have anticipated. It is an ongoing joy and a privilege to be part of this inspiring community of nurses.

Bronwen Griffiths and Angie Gittus

First Global Multidisciplinary Emergency Care Conference Cruise Venice to Greek Islands September 2017

“Striving for excellence in Emergency Care”. The First Global Multidisciplinary Emergency Care Conference “Striving for Excellence in Emergency Nursing Care – ALL HANDS ON DECK” will offer opportunities to discuss innovation and to showcase improvements made, or that could be made in the service delivery to create a better experience for our patients and their significant others. People who work in the Emergency Care focused disciplines do exceptional things on a daily basis and often the simplest improvements made can have the greatest impact. For the purposes of sharing these improvements so no improvement is too small. ACEN is now accepting oral presentation abstracts for this unique event. Share your practice innovations, evidence-based projects, quality improvement initiative, or original research by applying to become a presenter for “All Hands on Deck” 2017.


Are you out of date with your skills, or out of depth with current practice, then come join us on the 7c’s of knowledge cruise to Hamilton Island. Together we will explore Communication skills, Cardiac Assessment and management, Children, Confrontational patients and clients, Caring for the elderly, Core Assessment skills, Complimentary therapies and more. Acen is pleased to provide a unique educational opportunity to gain knowledge and skills with TWELVE (12) varied topics in a great environment aboard a major cruise ship.  Enjoy lots of fun and adventure while also earning 12 CPD points. P&O ARIA – Departs Brisbane – February 27th – March 3rd 2017

Nursing and Allied Health Scholarship and Support Scheme (NAHSSS)

The Australian College of Nursing will be opening applications for scholarships from the 9 February 2016. The online application form will be available after this date until the closing date of 14 March 2016. This scholarship provides assistance to nurses, midwives and nursing and midwifery students who are undertaking study at an Australian university or registered training organisation. For further information please contact the Australian College of Nursing via email or freecall 1800 117 262

Liz Cloughessy Welcomed to the International Trauma Life Support Board of Directors

LAS VEGAS – Three members of the International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) Board of Directors — two new members and one incumbent— were elected to the Board during ITLS’ International Trauma Conference Business Session on November 11. Among the newly elected Board members is Liz Cloughessy, AM, RN, Mast Health Mgt, FAEN(USA), of Sydney, NSW, Australia. She will serve a three-year term on the Board. Ms. Cloughessy is the Executive Director of the Australian College of Emergency Nursing and has served on its Board of Directors since 2000. Ms. Cloughessy has been the Chapter Coordinator for the Australia and New Zealand chapter of ITLS since facilitating the introduction of the ITLS (then BTLS) course in 2003. In this role, she is actively involved in the promotion, coordination, and teaching of ITLS programs including ITLS, ITLS Pediatric, and ITLS Military throughout Australia and New Zealand. At the international level, she is a dedicated member of the ITLS Global Development, Chapter Support, and Conference Planning committees, as well as the Editorial Board Research Workgroup and the Conference Planning Education and Competition workgroups. Ms. Cloughessy currently serves on the United States Emergency Nursing Association International Advisory Council. She has developed an Indigenous Healthcare Worker Advanced First Aid and Basic Life Support program and manual for the indigenous workers within Central Australia. She was also honored with a National Order of Australia Recognition Award (Australian Member AM) in 2004 for services to Emergency Care in Emergency, Disaster and Trauma. International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) is a global not-for-profit organization dedicated to preventing death and disability from trauma through education and emergency trauma care.

Liz Cloughessy Appointed to the ENA International Advisory Council

ACEN is pleased to announce that Liz Cloughessy, MHA, RN, FAEN Australia have been appointed to the ENA International Advisory Council along with international colleagues. G. Joop Breuer, RN, CEN, CCRN Netherlands; Janet L. Calnan, RN Canada; Seleem Choudhury, MSN, MBA, RN, CEN Colorado, USA; Gerardo Jasso Mexico; and Janet Youd United Kingdom.

This is a tremendous opportunity for ACEN to actively participate in the discussion of global emergency nursing issues and to work together on solutions. ACEN welcomes your active participation and any suggestions that you have for the council. ACEN will keep you updated as the work of the Council progresses