Ipswich nurse Shannon Wallis has claimed the Health Minister's Award for Nursing Trailblazers.
Ipswich nurse Shannon Wallis has claimed the Health Minister's Award for Nursing Trailblazers.

‘Virtual nursing’ project lands health care worker award

MORE than 500 chronically-ill patients already have reaped the benefits of a project developed by an Ipswich nurse and her team.

Shannon Wallis claimed the Australian College of Nursing’s Health Minister’s Award for Nursing Trailblazers on Monday afternoon.

The award recognised the work Ms Wallis has done for patients struggling with chronic diseases including developing a virtual nursing framework, MeCare.

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The project helps deliver early interventions to prevent admission to hospital.

“We identified the population within the West Moreton health district was predicted to double within the next 20 years so we had to think of an innovative way to care for our patients to keep them well and healthy and at home,” Ms Wallis said.

“And to reduce the number of times they would need to come into the hospital.”

Ms Wallis also developed an education package to on-board nurses to be able to engage with the new mode of working.

The project included specific tips and tools for ensuring nurses would still able to complete an environmental assessment virtually by guiding patients in the use of their home tablet.

When presenting the award, Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt MP congratulated Ms Wallis and all nurses around Australia for their work throughout COVID.

“The pandemic has necessitated rapid change to models of care and how health professionals deliver care,” Mr Hunt said.

“Measures such as the introduction of telehealth have been a revolution in the delivery of primary care … Nurses like Ms Wallis continue to put the needs of their patients first, while creating safe, effective practices to help our whole healthcare system.”

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Australian College of Nursing CEO Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward noted the importance of different care models in supporting patients through the pandemic.

“Work such as Shannon’s, which can support high-risk patients in isolating and treating their conditions from home, is crucial to ensuring those with comorbidities are not exposed to the risk of infection from COVID-19,” Prof Ward said.

Read more news by Ebony Graveur.



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