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Ipswich nurse gets Health Minister gong

An Ipswich nurse committed to managing chronic diseases in her community has taken out the Health Minister’s Award for Nursing Trailblazers.

Shannon Wallis was recognised for her work on MeCare (Mobile enabled Care), in which she developed a virtual nursing framework and education package to onboard nurses to the new mode of working.

It included tips and tools to help nurses complete an environmental assessment virtually by guiding the patients in the use of their home tablet.

MeCare now supports over 500 patients who experience one or more chronic illnesses and aims to deliver early intervention to prevent admission to hospital.

Australian College of Nursing chief executive Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward said Wallis’ work reflected the innovative and insightful ways nurses continue to advance the delivery of primary health care services.

“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 co-morbidities are not exposed to the risk of infection from COVID-19,” Ward said.

Minister for Health Greg Hunt congratulated Wallis and all Australian nurses for their work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As with many things in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated rapid change to models of care and how health professionals deliver care,” 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.”

Wallis took the win as an opportunity to highlight the work being done in West Moreton.

“The collaboration that occurs from the executive sponsors through to the virtual care multidisciplinary teams and even our health partners and axillary staff continually work together to build a culture of continuous learning and overcoming barriers for adoption of digital health,” Wallis said.

"I am blessed to be part of a wonderful team."

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