The Australian College of Nursing (ACN) welcomes the Australian Labor Party’s (ALP) victory in Saturday’s Federal Election and is calling for addressing the crisis facing the nursing workforce to be at the top of their post-election priority list.
“I congratulate the ALP on their election victory and look forward to working with new Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Health Minister Mark Butler,” ACN CEO Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward FACN said.
“Throughout the election campaign, all sides of politics acknowledged the importance of investing in a sustainable nursing workforce to ensure all Australians receive expert nursing care for generations to come. The next few months provide a unique opportunity for those promises to be backed up with tangible action.”
Adjunct Professor Ward highlighted a multi-pronged approach is required to address workforce shortages and ensuring the new Government’s pledge to have Registered Nurses 24/7 in residential aged care facilities is met.
“As I said at the time, I welcome the ALP’s positive intent to support the health of our vulnerable elderly population by ensuring they have access to highly-trained nurses,” she said.
“However, action is required on multiple fronts to ensure Australia’s largest health profession continues to shape the health of all Australians for generations to come. The solutions ACN advocates for are based on the experience and expertise of our Members and nurses we represent nationally.”
“They include improving access to transition pathways after graduation, visas for internationally trained nurses, greater health and wellbeing support, refresher courses for enrolled and registered nurses and ensuring nurses can access MBS item numbers. I re-iterate my calls for the incoming government to hold a national summit to develop an action plan to ensure these solutions are implemented.”
“I would also like to thank outgoing Prime Minister Scott Morrison and retiring Health Minister Greg Hunt for all they have done to support the nursing profession during their time in office.”