Over 200 key leaders and stakeholders of the nursing profession attended the virtual National Summit on the nursing workforce on Friday 14 October 2021.
Hosted by the Australian College of Nursing (ACN), the National Summit on the Nursing Workforce was designed to provide recommendations and proposed solutions to the Australian Government on the key issues impacting the nursing profession, including COVID-19.
The Summit was created in response to the amount of feedback being received by ACN from our members, who are feeling overwhelmed, anxious and exhausted, as well as nurses throughout Australia. ACN CEO Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward FACN published a viral opinion piece on the topic which was published in some of Australia’s major news outlets highlighting how the nursing crisis in Australia can no longer be ignored.
ACN sent out invites nationally to all nursing representatives, including CONNMO members, universities, employers, peak bodies, ACN affiliates, to the jurisdictions and the Australian Government. Expressions of interest for attendance were also sought from ACN Members and Fellows.
The Summit’s opening session featured keynote presentations from a range of nursing leaders including ACN’s CEO Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward FACN and President Professor Christine Duffield FACN, Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer Professor (Practice) Alison McMillan MACN PSM, Executive Officer of the Nursing & Midwifery Board of Australia Tanya Vogt and ANMAC CEO Clinical Professor Fiona Stoker FACN. You can watch the speeches in full below or on our YouTube Channel.
Attendees then split into virtual break-out rooms where they discussed the key issues facing the nursing workforce including retention, recruitment, nursing students, occupational violence and utilisation. The closed-door discussions ensured the Summit’s key recommendations incorporated the perspectives and views of the nurses on the frontline of the fight against COVID-19.
The Federal Minister for Health and Aged Care The Hon Greg Hunt MP was welcomed to the call for the Summit’s final session to hear directly from nurses on how best to address the current issue facing the nursing workforce. The outcomes and key solutions discussed in the break-out rooms were individually presented by the facilitator of each of the five focus groups. The event ended with Minister Hunt directly addressing the feedback provided by the nursing profession.
Outcomes from the National Summit on the nursing workforce are now available can be read in full here. They have also been shared with the Australian Government.
We would like to acknowledge all those who took the time out of their busy schedules to attend the event and ensured our profession’s voice was heard loud and clear!