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Today we have to pleasure of talking with Travel Nurse Sarai who is originally from Malawi, also nicknamed “The Warm Heart of Africa” about her experience travel nursing with HCA. Here’s what she has to say…
My name is Sarai. I migrated to New Zealand in 2005 where I completed my nursing training. I worked in a Spinal Unit in Auckland before migrating to Australia in 2017. I have vast experience in medical, surgical, and ICU wards. After working in ICU for many years, I decided to join the Emergency Department. ED nursing allows me to learn quickly and how to adapt to urgent situations. I hold a postgraduate diploma in critical care nursing from the University of Tasmania. I joined HCA in June 2022 and work with the Rural and Remote team.
How is your current placement going?
There is no typical day in ED. Some days at the beginning of your shift you find ambulances parked outside, you walk in wondering what kind of shift you will have; on the other hand, there are some days where you start with no patients in the waiting room. As a travel nurse in rural areas your scope is kind of extended compared to bigger hospitals. For example, you learn how to order imprest medications and order pathology tubes which you wouldn’t normally do in bigger hospitals.
A key advantage of working in rural and remote is the opportunity to discover the diverse communities and cultures in Australia.
What does it mean to work as part of the Emergency Response Team.
The job has been amazing, I have been able to assist in an extreme shortage of nursing staff. This means doing extra hours to cover for sick leave and also to cover for shifts that would otherwise have no nursing staff on.
Although I have a family of my own and will miss Christmas traditions, I enjoy caring for others year-round and have extended my placement through Christmas. This is particularly to support others in these times of extreme nursing shortages. At Coolamon, patients have become like family and the staff are extremely caring.
Any tips for someone keen to work rural and remote with HCA when they haven’t previously?
I would urge anyone wanting to work rural and remote not to hesitate as you will be greatly rewarded. HCA has great pay and great perks for all hard-working employees.
It has always been a pleasure working in a new facility because you meet different people, and you learn different ways of doing things. Coolamon was my very first placement in New South Wales and it has been an absolute pleasure to be part of the team. With a great attitude, you will pretty much fit everywhere.
Share with us – are there any other spots you’ve visited during your travels you would like to share?
My highlight is when I met an agency nurse Charity, a few years back in the ICU ward in Mount Isa. She told me she was from Wagga Wagga, I said to her “where the hell is that”?
Guess what? She is the one who picked me up from Wagga Wagga airport to Coolamon hospital (my current placement). Just a tip, be nice to everyone you work with, you never know who might look after you in the near future.
What’s your absolute favourite moment of working with HCA so far?
Sharing the same values as HCA is my favourite moment, Serving with compassion and kindness. Promoting HCA brand name by acting with absolute honesty, integrity and fairness is what I love doing.
What do you think is next for you – where would you want to go?
Coolamon has been great. It will be hard to say goodbye. I am in the process of securing a contract at Casino, NSW. I am so looking forward to the next chapter in my travel nursing adventure! I start on the 12th of Jan.
We’ve already complied a list of 7 Essential Travel Nursing Destinations this Christmas that you might like to visit