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Year of the Nurse and Midwife

Double page spread from the Wangaratta Chronicle with messages of thanks for to our nurses and midwives.
The Wangaratta Chronicle celebrates Year of the Nurse and Midwife 2020. Click to download pdf (2MB)

Year of the Nurse and Midwife

For hundreds of years, nurses and midwives have tirelessly worked to improve the health and well-being of others. To celebrate their invaluable contribution to global health care, the World Health Organization has declared 2020 as the Year of the Nurse and Midwife.

It’s a once-in-a-generation opportunity, not just for nations to show nurses and midwives that they are fundamental to achieving universal health care and sustainable development goals, but for 20 million nurses around the world to showcase how much they do, and how much more they can achieve with more support.

At Northeast Health we celebrate International Day of the Midwife (5 May) and International Nurses Day (12 May). Our nurses and midwives are a talented and committed force for change and we are so very grateful to them for the care, compassion and kindness they extend to their patients every time they come to work.

Greg Benton accepting the WB Richardson award
Greg Benton receives the WB Richardson Award 2019

WB Richardson Award for Excellence in Nursing and Midwifery

The WB Richardson Award for Excellence in Nursing and Midwifery is the oldest award in our suite of excellence awards. It was first awarded in the 1960’s to recognise the highest achieving student nurse from the Wangaratta and District Base Hospital School of Nursing. When the School closed in 1991, with the support of the Richardson family, the award continued as the pre-eminent award for nursing and midwifery practice at Northeast Health Wangaratta.

Greg Benton is a Clinical Liaison Nurse at NHW. His role focuses on improving outcomes for our patients with behavioural needs and providing evaluation and management advice on care strategies for those patients.
Read more about Greg…

Congratulations to Greg Benton who accepted the WB Richardson award with humility and wise words for us all

“So given the theme for International Nurses Day 2020 is – Nurses: A voice to lead – Nursing the World to Health. I would challenge you all, to ask the tough questions, to hold each other to account, and to measure the care you accept of yourself, and within your team, against the care you would want for your own loved ones. I guarantee that when you can see that we have made a difference, when a colleague, a patient or family member comes up to you, and says thank you, it’s easy to come back for round two.” Greg Benton


A shout-out to our Nurses and Midwives

Thank you for your service, dedication and commitment to our community.

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Thank you to all the nurses at North East Health Wangaratta, for taking such good care of me on New Years Day, when I came in with a broken hip! Hats off to you all, you have my gratitude and esteem. 💝💝👏🏻👏🏻👍👍👩🏻‍⚕️👨🏼‍⚕️🌹
Linny Piemonte 

My mum Julie Quartermain was a midwife at NHW for many years and I had my daughter there so I have lots of respect for the midwives xx
Suzie Quarters 

We want to acknowledge and thank our current nursing colleagues in the Complex Care Service: Danielle Vowles, Meagan Tharratt, Karen Adcock, Elizabeth Paton, Susie Briggs, Emma McCormack, Maree Jenkin, Naomi Bevin, Darren Bate. Every day, we see the extraordinary care, kindness, and compassion they provide to their clients. As non-nursing colleagues, we have learned so much from working alongside these nurses. NHW is truly fortunate to have such a competent and skilled team who go above and beyond to deliver best care to ‘Every Patient, Every Time’.
Ruth Mulligan and Annette McLeod-Boyle

Andrea Tobias (Andi) is a fabulous nurse and one of the best triage nurses I know. I receive copious amounts of recognition of her triage and waiting room skill during staff rounding. She is able to work the ED waiting room with warmth, and compassion. She is a great communicator and is able to support and educate patients and families and is a fierce patient advocate. Andi is a respected leader within our team and a relentless champion of great nursing care. She is kind, fair, honest and reliable. I am honoured to work alongside her.
Jodie Moore

I had my twins here and the care from this whole unit was world class! Thank you so much ladies!James and Brodie are doing great Xx
Heather McGee 

The best midwives at Northeast Health!! 🙌🏼 A massive thankyou to Rachelle who didn’t leave my side when I had our first baby in March, I honestly wouldn’t of been able to do it without her!! 👶🏼
Ashlee Cameron 

Jennifer Newth coz she loves her job and she is an amazing nurse….
Sha-sha Elisha Newth-Pantling

I would like Olivia Gourlay to be recognised as an outstanding midwife.  She has been a midwife for the past two years and was a student with us at NHW. Olivia wrote a comprehensive booklet on taking care of yourself postnatally .  Olivia has been an important member of the midwifery team and is always eager to help the women and her fellow team members.   Olivia works across all areas of midwifery and is extremely competent.  She is always calm in emergency situations and has a comprehensive knowledge about midwifery and displays her midwifery skills well in educating the women and giving them the best possible care.  Olivia is a fantastic midwife and a great asset to the midwifery team.
Anne Leavett-Brown

I feel so fortunate to have worked with so many amazing and inspiring nurses in my career.
I worked with a wonderful RN “Annie” when I worked in neurosurgery at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. She was the whole package!  first and foremost she was so caring, compassionate and giving to her patients.  She strove to bring the best self to work every day and critically reflected on her performance and what she would like to better. She maintained current knowledge and drove best practice in the unit. She mostly had quiet influence but when she needed to advocate for her patients and team she had an impressive assertive manner that really enabled her to get the best out of those who worked with her. 

When I was working in ED at GVH, I was constantly impressed by “Helen’s” curiosity, her thirst to know more and understand the big picture. She was great to have robust clinical conversations with and I loved that she challenged my thought processes.  We loved reviewing presentations together when we were fortunate enough to work together.  Her curiosity was infectious.

These are a couple of the many nurses who have taught me so much.  I am so grateful for their influence
Anna Dewan

Before I was a nurse, I had two great experiences as a Mid patient, which along with my love for medical TV shows (lol) inspired me to become a Theatre Nurse. The nurses in Benalla Hospital were all great, especially Janine and Selena (I still remember even though it’s been over 20 years).  They were fantastic, and I remember thinking ‘I could do that!’ I may not have become a midwife but am very appreciative that they helped to plant the seed of what I consider a fantastic career.
Alison Dean RN

We couldn’t have loved our experience any more than we did with you guys. As a first-time mum the support and reassurance was great. Ebony, Rachelle and Helen helped our little girl Lucy Mae into the world, and each day Helen was there popping in. Lots of other midwives too, all amazing but your names have slipped my mind! Thankyou. Love the Jarratts x
Katie Jarratt 

I would like to acknowledge the nursing staff I work with in the Diabetes Education and Continence Nursing Teams: Josie Hill, Helen O’Donoghue, Rebecca Humphreys, Leanne Knox and Deborah Gregory.  These skilled and experienced nurses are compassionate, collaborative and provide exceptional patient-centred, clinical care to our community. I feel privileged to work alongside these nurses and have learnt a great deal from them all.
Eleanor Capel

drawing of a nurse by 5 year old Eden Watkins with the words We are grateful for you guys

Eden Watkins

Thank you so much to all of the amazing midwives and nurses who helped deliver our baby! We had Amy and Rachelle and I absolutely loved them!! I felt so reassured knowing that my baby was in their care in the special care nursery!! And the love and support I received was phenomenal. I will never be able to thank you all enough.. Kim, Katie, Yonna, Sophie, Tracey, Di, Karli, Clancy, Kate and Sally.. Thank you 💕
Alysia Wilson

When I think of great nurses, I think of Kirsten Pianta who works in ED. She is gentle, calm and patient. I have seen her sit patiently at the side of a pt with delirium quietly reassuring and cajoling him to complete the necessary treatments when there was chaos swirling around her .in that moment that dear old man was her only priority .she connects with her patients in a very authentic and genuine manner. Listening to her going about her work is a delight. I often catch glimpses of these beautiful interactions as I move around the dept. She is funny, kind and every day I have the opportunity to work beside her I feel truly blessed. Kirsten is grounded and reflective and is a brilliant reminder to me to enjoy the little things and find joy in all that we do. She makes me proud to be a nurse.

Jodie Moore

Ali looked after us when our bub arrived in 2018! She was just amazing. Only positive vibes for everyone of those midwives at NHW ❤️
Melissa Kelly


Thank you to the paediatric team of nurses. Not only did you care for my child, but you gave me hugs when I needed them too.
RaRa Dee

My experience earlier this year was absolutely wonderful. Each midwife was exceptionally caring and warm for this first time mum. Too many to thank but big stand outs to Heidi, Rachelle & Tracey. Thank you! ❤️
Sharna Scott 

Lisa Twamley because she’s an incredible wife, mum, nana, friend and nurse ❤️❤️❤️
Abby Crotty


I can’t thank the medical team enough for keeping my grandson alive who was born 14 weeks early 4 years ago
Susan Hanson 

Donna & Raeleen helped bring our little Archie into the world last week. They were amazing. He was our third child at NHW. Each experience has been fantastic because of the midwife team.
Erica Miller

I would like to give a shout out to acknowledge Kerrie Cooke. I was a school aged PCA apprentice at Benalla hospital from 2002 to 2004. Towards the end of the apprenticeship, I was doubting my ability to continue my studies to become a nurse. She sat down with me, told me I could and gave me the confidence to continue on my nursing journey. To this day I still remember the kindness shown by Kerrie.
Tara Jose

Yes!! I had all 3 of my babies at wang and I can’t recommend you guys enough! Especially with Frankie in jan 2018 with everything that was going on after my caesarean you we’re all so supportive I can’t thankyou enough ❤️
Amanda Mancini 

You are all god sends! Thank you for all that you do, and for being so wonderful!
Lynette Tarrant 

We had the most amazing midwife who was just the most caring, calm and amazing person, couldn’t have wished for a better nurse! Catherine Hawksworth, I can’t thank you enough! And all the nurses who looked after us on the ward, you are all incredible! Huge Love for you all! Xx
Katie Horn

After 35 years of nursing I have observed perpetual kindness and caring, respect and skill.  My closest nursing friends from my training days at the Royal Melbourne Hospital all continue in diverse careers across the nursing spectrum. Most of them do not need to work; they choose to nurse. Such is their passion.  Some of my most memorable midwifery moments were encountered when mentored by dedicated and talented Community Midwives during my training in England. They were then, and still are today, absolutely committed to low risk birthing practices.  I remain, every day, and more poignantly during the COVID pandemic, in awe of the efforts of nurses across the globe.
Sally Timmins

THANK YOU to all of the exceptionally caring midwives at Northeast Health and a special thank you to Olivia and Catherine who helped us bring our babe Amelia Jane into the world on 10/04/2020 💞💞💞
Emily Lewis 

Thank you Amy for being the most amazing midwife! I loved my labour and felt was so relaxed with you by my side! “I’m just gonna take a nap here” 🤣 Is it too early to book you in for when we have our next baby?? Haha ❤️
Olivia Butts 

Thank you to Nurse “Nat” who was my clinical facilitator on the Neurosurgical ward at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, when I was a 2nd Year student. Nat was smart, efficient, patient, kind and compassionate to her patients and colleagues.  After this placement I really understood what Nursing was about and I wanted to be her. Later in my career along came “lovely Lyn”.  Lyn was a very experienced ED nurse who so wise and kind.  Lyn always had and made time, she kept a cool head under pressure and worked collaboratively with the whole team. I took from Lyn how you could be professional, kind and still advocate for patients without feeling like you were fighting against colleagues or the system.
So many people have influenced my career and my time in this profession but these two nurses who by just doing their thing and going about their business being a “Nurse”, I admired from the sideline and secretly wished I was them.
Rebecca Weir

I would like to acknowledge Lois Foley. I came into nursing later in life and started one very nervous, not so confident nurse. I worked casually at first and gained a level confidence around the hospital. Then a job for the Transit Lounge came, I applied and Lois became my manager. She has the most caring compassionate heart. Every time I thought I couldn’t achieve what I needed, she continually gave me the confidence to keep meeting those challenges and always encouraged to take that next step. She is such an inspiration and has been such an integral part of my nursing career for her willingness to go above and beyond in caring for me as a nurse professionally and a caring friend.
Margie Readhead

Jill Clayton has been a fabulous addition to the nursing profile in the Special Care Nursery, bringing to NHW a great skill set and is a valuable asset to our organisation. She has worked tirelessly to improve and update policies and procedures, has shared her knowledge within her own department as well as being instrumental in assisting with neonatal resus within the emergency department. Jill is a wonderful advocate for her patients and their families.
Jodie Moore

Being the son of a nurse, I have always regarded the profession with high esteem. In fact, it was listening to my Mum’s stories after her days on the wards, in the local ED, or out in the community that sparked my interest in healthcare.

I have been very lucky to be a student of many nurses throughout my medical training. Most memorable is my time as a student of the Melbourne Medical School Rural Clinical School in Shepparton, where there is a strong history of Nurse-led medical student education. Our very own Anna Dewan was one of my teachers during my emergency term. The ability of our clinical education facilitators (CEF’s) to correlate the theoretical knowledge we had all learnt in textbooks, to the clinical picture we were confronted with on the wards was incredible.

During my time at Northeast Health, I have had the great privilege to work with many nurses across the organisation and have always found them supportive and incredibly knowledgeable. The tips and tricks that come second nature to many experienced nurses here have saved my butt on numerous occasions. I have also had the pleasure of working closely with Rebecca Weir who has provided some great advice to me personally, and I have been witness to her efficient and collaborative style of leadership which I can only hope to emulate as I progress in my medical career.

The most important lesson my Mum told me when I accepted my place in Medical School was “to always be nice to and respect the nurses”. This advice has certainly held me in good stead at Northeast Health, and will no doubt continue to do so into the future.

Happy International Year of the Nurse & Midwife! ❤️
Dr Seb Kirby

I am so grateful for everything they do, such an inspiration well done!! Teagan Woodward you have made me so proud, also working on the frontline on your grad year you are one of these beautiful people who have saved a lot of lives ❤️❤️❤️
Cherie Woodward