TDHS Ward Nurses Michelle Selten

Community needs best met by flexible MPS model

The flexibility of being able to use Timboon’s hospital beds to best suit the needs of the community is one of the things Nursing Unit Manager Michelle Selten loves about coming to work every day.

“If we have less demand for acute beds, we can use those beds for additional respite and I think that’s so important for our community,” Ms Selten said.

“We have 14 beds on the ward and we can use them flexibly to meet wherever the demand is, including aged care as well. We can even provide palliative care to support a family locally during a difficult time.”

Timboon and District Healthcare Service (TDHS) is one of only seven multi-purpose hospitals (MPS) in Victoria. Ms Selten said it not only provided great flexibility for the beds, but also for her nursing team.

“We have Associate Nursing Unit Managers (ANUM), Registered Nurses (RN) and Enrolled Nurses (EN) – both medication-endorsed and non-medication-endorsed, but within that lots of our nurses are generalists,” she said.

“They manage urgent care, which is emergency presentations, they manage aged care residents as well as acute and paediatric patients, respite and palliative care.

“Even though we don’t birth here, we also have a number of midwives who do prenatal care and postnatal care and we offer a community midwife service.

“There’s also our theatre nurses as well as the district nursing team who work alongside my team to deliver services in the community.”

Ms Selten said her team consisted of 44 nurses, mostly part time employees, and the nature of the MPS provided a lot of flexibility and variety in their work.

“Our ANUMs also manage a portfolio for accreditation as well – such as infection control, medication safety and comprehensive care,” she said.

“In many ways our nursing team is the face of TDHS – they are a big part of the overall staffing.”

Ms Selten said the increased recognition of nurses due to 2020 being the ‘Year of the Nurse and Midwife’ had been a really positive thing for the team.

“I think it’s great to celebrate our nurses. It’s good for the community to see our nurses and recognise the hard work they do and also for TDHS to recognise the hard work they do.

“I’m really proud of my nursing team.”

This story in our fifth monthly instalment to help mark 2020 the Year of the Nurse and Midwife.  The whole series can be found here

Nurses make up a significant proportion of our workforce and TDHS would not be able to run without their dedication, skill and compassionate care. We are very excited to be celebrating their valuable contributions throughout the year. We hope you join us in recognising and thanking our nurses.    

  • Dr Irwyn Shepherd
    Posted at 21:51h, 12 May Reply

    Hi Michelle. Keep up the good work! I went to school at Timboon anf visited the original hospital once – yep. tonsils. Dr Fox snr.
    I too ended up as an RN specialising in OHSU ICU then later as an educator running a critrical care program, advancing to simulation. I was incredibly fortunate to receive a National Florence Nightingale Award which helped me finish my doctorate. Importantly Pat Couch is my Auntie.

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