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News & Media
Discover the latest industry news relevant to the remote health and isolated health workforce.
Release of The National Rural and Remote Nursing Generalist Framework heralds new era of preparedness for remote area nurses
The Assistant Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention & Rural and Regional Health, the Hon. Emma McBride, has today launched the National Rural and Remote Nursing Generalist Framework 2023 – 2027 at Parliament House, in a move CRANAplus recognises as an important milestone for the remote area nursing profession.
The Framework defines the unique context of practice and capabilities required by rural and remote area nurses, enabling registered nurses who work or plan to work in rural and remote areas to assess their skill set and plan their professional development.
CRANAplus Chief Executive Officer Katherine Isbister was a leading member of the Framework’s Steering Committee, composed of peak industry bodies and led by National Deputy Commissioner for Rural Health, Nursing and Midwifery, Adjunct Professor Shelley Nowlan.
“Advanced generalist skills are essential in remote areas, and the Framework highlights the need for remote area nurses to be proficient in cultural safety, primary health care, public health, and acute care, while advocating for social justice and health equity,” Ms Isbister says.
“Limited resources, staffing and clinical support, and the increased burden of disease faced in remote Australia, make the case for the generalist capabilities outlined in the Framework.
“The Framework provides nurses with a tool for self-assessment, enabling them to work meaningfully with educators and mentors to build their capabilities.
“Nurses frequently enquire with CRANAplus on how to transition to remote health practice and we will now be able to use this tool in conjunction with nurses to identify areas for further growth.
“Importantly, the Framework is also a tool that employers, educators, governments, and peak bodies can use to assess their current programs, consider scope of practice and tailor their professional development opportunities.
“The Framework is a meaningful step towards a structured and widely available remote area nursing pathway, on par with the rural generalist pathways for medicine and allied health.
“Here at CRANAplus, we will be embedding the Framework into our Remote Area Nursing Pathway Program, which we launched in 2022, to ensure it supports professional development across all domains of remote health practice.”
Deputy Chair of the CRANAplus Board of Directors John Wright says the Framework means that “Nurses will no longer have to enter at the deep end.”
“Rural and remote practice is a different world and while standard nursing training is great for the city, it’s not right for the remote setting, where generalism is key.
“Previously, new remote nurses have sometimes had to learn from experience and on the go. Now, new nurses can know what to expect. Preparedness is no longer a question of being lucky enough to have a quality mentor.
“The Framework will allow people to go in better prepared, increasing their satisfaction in this brilliant career path, as well as their ability to improve remote health.
“Rural and remote nursing isn’t something you do for a few years, before returning to an urban setting. It’s a highly fulfilling, highly specialised career and this Framework recognises that.
“It recognises that clinical practice and culturally safe practice go hand in hand, and how important it is to go from being task-focused, to having a client focus.”
The Framework can be accessed here.
Assistant Minister for Health and Aged Care The Hon Ged Kearney MP; CRANAplus CEO Katherine Isbister; Deputy National Rural Health Commissioner (Nursing and Midwifery) Adjunct Professor Shelley Nowlan; and SA Health’s Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer, Adjunct Professor Jennifer Hurley
More about CRANAplus
CRANAplus is the peak professional body for the remote and isolated health workforce. Our not-for-profit, membership-based organisation provides education, mental health support, career support, and professional services to nurses, midwives, and other health professionals to ensure the delivery of safe, high-quality primary healthcare to remote and isolated areas of Australia.
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