A much needed win for the Launceston General Hospital Emergency Department

14 May 2021,

After years of campaigning, members of the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation Tasmanian Branch (ANMF) working in the Launceston General Hospital Emergency Department are celebrating a win for the community. These members have been fiercely dedicated to advocating for change to address unsustainable and unsafe workloads for many years.

This celebration comes after the Tasmanian Health Service committed an additional 21.3 Full Time Equivalent (FTE) to the Department. This was the result of the ANMF, on behalf of members, lodging an application with the Tasmanian Industrial Commission for conciliation and/or arbitration on the matter.

“This win is a welcome outcome for our members and their colleagues at the Launceston General Hospital Emergency Department,” said ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary Emily Shepherd.

“It comes after many years of fighting and campaigning for additional nursing staff to deliver the quality of care that our members want, and the community deserves.”

“The extra nursing staff will help our members to cope with increasing presentations, long lengths of stay for admitted patients, and an overflowing waiting room, and ambulance ramping due to access block.”

The additional FTE will be made up of Grade 3 and Grade 4 nursing staff who will be permanently recruited to the Launceston General Hospital Emergency Department. Their implementation will be overseen by the ANMF at an implementation committee in conjunction with Launceston General Hospital management. This outcome was agreed to through the Tasmanian Industrial Commission.

“Wait times at the Launceston General Hospital Emergency Department are some of the worst in the Country. While the additional FTE will help make the Department safer for staff and patients alike, it will not fix the root cause of the problem facing members across the State.”

“The FTE will allow greater numbers of nursing staff to respond to patient needs in the Emergency Department while the broader issue of access block are resolved.”

“Our members should be acknowledged for their resilience and dedication, and for continuing to advocate for their patients and the Tasmanian community.”

“It is the ongoing commitment of nurses, sometimes at great personal sacrifice, that has led to this outcome in which a better standard of patient care and safety is possible.”

“ANMF members above all else want to provide safe and quality care to all of their patients in the Launceston General Hospital Emergency Department and this outcome will go a long way to achieving this.”

The ANMF will continue their advocacy and engagement with all stakeholders to put forward solutions to address the ongoing issues associated with access block across the Tasmanian health system.

–  End  –

Media contact:
Emily Shepherd, ANMF Tasmanian Branch Secretary
Mobile: 0400 884 021
Email: Emily.shepherd@anmftas.org.au