The 2019 Rural Nurses was the biggest yet with 94 nurses from all over rural NZ attending the meeting in Wellington. The meeting which included informative and inspirational speakers mixed with hands on clinical workshops provided rural nurses a unique opportunity to get together, share experiences, learn, and have a break from often demanding rural roles.
The meeting however is a victim of its own success. Although delegates meet the cost of transport to Wellington, Mobile Health has met the cost of accommodation and all conference expenses. Mobile Health Chief Executive Mark Eager explains “many rural nurses don’t receive funding for conferences, so when we first introduced the conferences more than a decade ago we tried to remove as many barriers as possible for rural nurses, and we had funding to do that. With rising costs, and rising numbers of nurses, we had to take a hard look at the meeting. Unfortunately as we negotiated our new contract with the Ministry it became clear that we needed to focus funding on our core services.” Mark Eager suggests they will be working with Rural Nurses NZ, The NZ Rural General Practice Network, and other organisations to ensure rural nurses have a conference forum in the future.
For the record in 2019 nurses came from Ashburton, Balclutha, Dannevirke, Dargaville, Dunedin, Dunstan, Featherston, Foxton, Gore, Hamilton, Hawera, Kaikohe, Kapiti, Levin, Napier, Napier, Oamaru, Otaki, Pukekohe, Queenstown, Rawene, Taihape, Takaka, Taumarunui, Taupo, Temuka, Tokoroa, Waikari, Waipukurau, Wairoa, Wanaka, Whangarei…
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