This strategy continues to address the professional issues nurses are facing across the system – for our members and non-members. It focuses on information, upskilling, advocacy, support for nurses, navigating the health system during this time and community awareness. Nurses of Australia, we hear you and we are here for you.
COVID-19 Nurses Support Strategy
Help inform the public
We asked nurses to submit messages for the public to shed light on their unique experiences and let members of the community know how we can all work together to get through these difficult times. The most common themes from these responses have been used to create a poster educating the public about ’10 Ways to Support Nurses’ during the current COVID-19 outbreak.
This resource is crucial to raising awareness about the actions the community can take to help our profession get through this challenging time. We encourage you to download the poster, display it for your community to see and share our social media images.
Become a registered immuniser
Look after your personal and professional well-being
Register for the Nurses' Buddy Hub to give or receive support
Engage in COVID-19 discussions with like-minded nurses
Immunisation policy publications
Open Letter for all Victorian Nurses
We have collated a list of educational resources* to keep nurses informed, safe and prepared to respond to the unfolding COVID-19 outbreak. We encourage you to regularly refer to the Australian Government Department of Health website for the latest news and announcements. If you are unable to find the information you are looking for, or have a suggestion for a evidence-based and useful resource to share with nurses, please get in touch by emailing us.
Information for COVID-19 vaccination providers
The Information for COVID-19 vaccination providers page is now available on the Department of Health website. This page includes information for COVID-19 vaccination providers, including general practices, GP-led Respiratory Clinics and Aboriginal and Community Controlled Health Services and community pharmacies.
- Clinical guidance and information for COVID-19 vaccination providers from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI)
- Consent information and forms for vaccination providers and their patients.
The Department of Health also has a number of resources that are available on the website for you to share and promote through your own channels. These include:
COVID-19 vaccine aged care readiness toolkit
COVID-19 vaccination training
The Department of Health has released the mandatory online training modules for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. Staff working for authorised COVID-19 vaccination providers are required to complete the training before they can administer the vaccines.
To access COVID-19 vaccination training, visit covid19vaccinationtraining.org.au.
New information for residential aged care facilities
A suite of tiles that can be used on social media to support the COVID-19 aged care vaccination program: COVID-19 vaccination – social media images – aged care.
Vaccine Logistics – where can I get the COVID -19 vaccine?
ATAGI guidelines on exemptions for COVID-19 vaccines
ATAGI has released new advice on the acute medical conditions that warrant a temporary exemption for COVID-19 vaccines. The resource includes information on the relevant conditions and related COVID-19 vaccines, the implications for an AEFI, the duration of exemptions, and more.
Australian Government Department of Health
MBS item numbers for in-home COVID-19 vaccinations
Commencing 1 January 2022, two new MBS items will be introduced that allow nurses to conduct a COVID-19 Vaccine Suitability Assessment in a patient’s home. The new item numbers are designed to improve access to vaccines and booster shots for those who are unable to attend a vaccination site.
New MBS remote supervision item MBS items 93600 and 93661 will be introduced on 1 January 2022 to improve access to vaccines and booster shots for those unable to attend a vaccination site. The new items will allow an appropriately qualified health professional (for example, a nurse or Aboriginal Health Worker) to conduct a COVID-19 Vaccine Suitability Assessment on behalf of a General Practitioner (GP) or Other Medical Practitioner (OMP).
Health care workers after COVID-19 exposure
Vaccinated and masked health care workers will now no longer have to isolate after being exposed to COVID-19. Under the new framework, health care settings will be able to undertake a risk assessment to decide whether it is necessary for the staff member to continue working to ensure ongoing access to health care services.
With COVID-19 vaccinations now mandatory for health care workers in Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia.
COVID-19 vaccination in children and adolescents
There are now two COVID-19 vaccines that can be given to children as young as 12 in Australia — Moderna and Pfizer. This guide outlines the current recommendations for vaccinating children and adolescents, and the latest data on efficacy and adverse reactions for the use of COVID-19 vaccines in this age group.
Vaccine consent and young people
The Department of Health has provided advice on obtaining consent from young people for COVID-19 vaccinations. It is important to be across these guidelines to ensure consent is being obtained correctly before proceeding with a vaccination.
COVID-19 vaccination – Video – Dr Marilyn Clarke explains why pregnant women should get the COVID-19 vaccine
In this video, Worimi woman, obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Marilyn Clarke explains that COVID-19 vaccination advice has changed for pregnant women (short video).
COVID-19 indemnity scheme to protect health professionals and patients
The Australian Government is establishing a COVID-19 Vaccine Claim Scheme to provide further assurance and confidence to patients and health professionals in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.
Information for consumers and health professionals
Find out answers to the common types of questions you may have about how the TGA assesses and monitors a vaccine for safety, quality and effectiveness.
Infection Control Expert Group (ICEG)
Victorian COVID-19 vaccination guidelines
The Victorian COVID-19 vaccination guidelines (the guidelines) provide a primary point of information and resources for Victorian COVID-19 vaccination providers based on information and minimum site requirements set out by the Commonwealth. Compliance with these guidelines is a condition of the Public Health Emergency Orders and Secretary’s Approvals that will authorise the necessary Victorian workforce to deliver the vaccine. The guidelines also state the required training and supervision ratios for the Victorian emergency authorised immunisation workforce.
World Health Organization
National COVID-19 Clinical Evidence Taskforce
Management of mild to moderate COVID-19 in primary care
With over 100,000 cases of COVID-19 in Australia, some of the burden for managing mild to moderate COVID-19 is shifting to primary health care. The COVID-19 Clinical Taskforce has developed factsheets / clinical flowsheets for the treatment options for mild to moderate COVID-19 useful in the primary healthcare care sector.
Department of Health and Human Services, State Government of Victoria, Australia
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for contact and droplet precautions (4 minute timeframe)
Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care
The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care has developed a number of resources to assist healthcare organisations, facilities, clinicians and consumers. These and other material on COVID-19 are available here. These resources include:
COVID-19 and face masks – Information for consumers
The Commission’s fact sheet on use of face masks in the community to reduce the spread of COVID-19 is now available in Easy English and 10 other community languages from here. The factsheet was developed to help people understand when it is important to wear a mask to reduce the risk of the spread of COVID-19, and to explain how to safely put on and remove face masks. It also reinforces the importance of staying home if you have symptoms, physical distancing, hand hygiene and cough etiquette.
Australian Government Department of Health
COVID-19 aged care grief and trauma support services
These services provide grief and trauma support for those living, working and caring in the aged care sector, who have been impacted by COVID-19.
Journal of Nursing Research
International Journal of Nursing Studies
Journal of Nursing Scholarship
National Center for Biotechnology Information
Australian Red Cross Lifeblood
Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia
The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) position statements to provide guidance to the professions which help to clarify the NMBAs views and expectations on a range of issues.
Registered health practitioners and students and COVID-19 vaccination COVID-19 vaccination position statement
No place for sexism, sexual harassment or violence in healthcare No place for sexism, sexual harassment or violence in healthcare
Nurse & Midwife Support
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
National Health Practitioner Ombudsman
Department of Veterans' Affairs
Other jurisdictions health professional advice
COVID-19 Australian and New Zealand research
COVID-19 international research
National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCRIS)
Administration of vaccines – Scope of practice for healthcare professionals guide
NCIRS has developed a new resource with an overview of scope of practice relating to administering vaccines. The guide includes information for enrolled nurses, registered nurses, and a number of other roles. For each role the guide clarifies what they can and can’t do, as well as the relevant qualifications. The guide also includes state-specific information and up-to-date advice relating to COVID-19 vaccines.
National Asthma Council Australia
* All resources are relevant as of their upload date. Due to the dynamic nature of this rapidly unfolding situation we encourage you to regularly check the individual information sources for any further updates.
COVID-19 NurseClick stories
Stories of nursing in 2020
To capture the stories, emotions and events of 2020, we invited ACN Distinguished Life Fellows, Fellows, Members and Students to contribute to our ACN Community Digital Mosaic.
We wanted to build a powerful image that represents what we have achieved in 2020 collectively and record the experiences of nurses that reflect the diversity of our roles, fields, and stages of our careers.
The ACN Community Digital Mosaic was another way of saying thank you to all our nurses for their contributions to this unprecedented year. You can read samples of some of the incredible stories we received below.
“As a student nurse, I will always remember and be grateful for the placement experiences I had in 2020, and be in awe of the nurse preceptors who showed amazing adaptability and professionalism in the face of great challenges. I will always aspire to to be like them.”
– Susan Bassett MACN (Undergraduate)
“The final year of an undergraduate nursing degree is never guaranteed to be smooth sailing. Adding COVID-19 into the mix meant dealing with a rapid shift to online learning, cancelled and rescheduled placements and ever-changing guidelines. Traditional in-person graduate year interviews were replaced by online interviews or simply recording video responses.
Through all the uncertainty and ever-changing goalposts, I managed to finish my final placement and on Christmas Eve no less. Thank you to the nurses I’ve met along the way who have been nothing but supportive and eager to teach. I can’t wait to join you next year.”
– Jo Schobben MACN
“Having the privilege of leading thousands of dedicated nurses and midwives throughout the COVID-19 pandemic in Melbourne has been a humbling and extremely rewarding experience. We have all worked so hard during this period to keep our patients and each other safe. I am in awe of my colleagues and could not be prouder to be a nurse than I am in this, our year.”
– Paula Stephenson MACN
“2020 will be a year to remember. After many years of doing general practice nursing we adapted to delivering care via telehealth overnight. The practice had always delivered immunisations at an appointment in the surgery – we had to deliver Flu vaccines to over 1000 patients in the car park!”
– Jane Bollen MACN
“I have been nursing for more than 14 years on 3 different continents. Year 2020 for me was lonely and isolating as I cared for my patients here in Australia, while my mum lives in Italy. For my patients I had to become their family. As borders closed and communities became smaller, as a nurse I became an integral part of people’s lives. To become more effective for the betterment of my community, this year I became a Nurse Immuniser, with the help of The Australian College of Nursing. Now patients come to me not only for wound dressings, not only for Health Assessments, not only for injections. They come to me when they are at their lowest, and I am there to help.”
– Noel Paradero
“A year like no other in Victoria. So blessed to have worked with a team of health care workers from across the country. Thank you for the experience and thank you for standing together! I have never been more proud to be a nurse.”
– Sarah Sida
“2020 was an exceptional and interesting year to be a nurse. Faced with challenges from COVID, our profession rose to the challenge and we continued to deliver exceptional care. Congrats to everyone!”
– Lee Garwood MACN
“I have been a nurse for over 40 years and 2020 has been the most challenging. At that same time it has been very rewarding. I have provided an audiometry service to children as a sole clinician and screened more clients and reduced my long waiting list from months down to a week. Restructuring the clinics by working smarter achieving outcomes was certainly noticed in my LHD. The client satisfaction that they were able to get a service was my reward when other services had completely shut down. I also have been the President of the audiometry nurses association providing positive leadership when others felt despair during the pandemic. Having a positive approach to life and drawing on my years of nursing experience I know this year is going to pass and we will move forward again soon. Patience & resilience are the best nursing skills to have.”
– Tracy Hawes
“Ever the resilient and compassionate workers – we have faced such adversity this last 12 months. Thank you to everyone – the workers, our families and communities for supporting and lifting each other through a challenging year to remember.”
– Pam D
“Deciding to go to university & become an RN was a dream come true. Many thought I was crazy starting at 53. 2020 has been the best & worst year of my life thus far … I know the best is yet to come.”
– Karen Hawken MACN (Undergraduate)
“Proud to be a nurse at such a profound time in history”
– Hazel Bucher MACN