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Introducing one of our newest Board Members, Danielle Causer
At the CRANAplus Annual General Meeting in October, Danielle Causer was voted in as one of two of CRANAplus’ newest Board Members, along with Ann Aitken. As Executive Director (ED) of Nursing for Central West Queensland and with more than 19 years of primary healthcare nursing and public sector experience, Danielle is eager to give back and share her remote health care insight and enthusiasm with the CRANAplus community
Hooked on country living, Danielle’s base outside of Townsville pays homage to her farm upbringing in New South Wales, complete with sheep, chooks, cats and dogs.
“We couldn’t bring ourselves to actually be living in town, we needed headspace and [physical] space for our family as well,” says Danielle.
In her role for Central West Queensland, Danielle’s work covers 23 per cent of Queensland’s landmass where just three per cent of the state’s population resides.
Connecting into three Hospital and Health Services (HHSs), the Central West region faces unique challenges – from distance and time pressures to road closures and bringing in air support.
“In the southern part, our patient pathway goes to the Darling Downs into Toowoomba and Brisbane; Longreach into the Central Area we’ll go to Brisbane or to Rockhampton; our North Western side will go up to Mount Isa, or through to Townsville,” says Danielle.
“We have to be connected and work across several different HHSs… to sustain patient focused care, we have to be open to various different paths.”
As part of her role with Central West Queensland, Danielle is also an Adjunct Professor at James Cook University. Her credentials include a Master of Nursing, along with qualifications and experience in clinical education, general practice management and project management.
Danielle was also the first nurse on the Queensland Hospital and Health Service boards and part of the sub-committee for safety and quality representing the Western Downs.
“As the Executive Director of Nursing [Central West Queensland], [governance is]… part of my role, and in my previous role I was the Director of Clinical Governance for the Central West,” says Danielle.
When she’s not working, Danielle volunteers her time to share the stories of rural and remote nurses and midwives through her passion project ‘A Nurse Out Where’ podcast.
“I thought we really need to start sharing these stories and getting the voice out there because rural and remote nurses are a specialty in their own right, and I think we really need to celebrate that,” she says.
“I want to be able to acknowledge that [working in isolated areas] is hard, it’s not easy, and it’s not for everybody… but you don’t know unless you try. And if you don’t hear about it, you don’t think about it.”
Danielle describes her longstanding love for remote healthcare as an equal split between head and heart.
“My head tells me professionally that it’s about the autonomy, it’s about the ability to really work at the top of your scope,” she says, “and to challenge myself professionally to be able to do those things.
“But my heart tells me it’s the community… I love getting involved in all the community events and understanding the culture.”
On being on the Board
When asked about her new position on the CRANAplus Board, Danielle expressed gratitude and pride to be given the opportunity and said she is looking forward to returning the support.
“Rural and remote is my passion and I’ll be there for [CRANAplus members] as much as they’ve been there for me,” she says.
Learn more about CRANAplus’ Board Members including Ann Aitken who was also voted in October 2022.