Assistant Director, Nursing & Midwifery Workforce

Angela maintains open communication with her team and values their input. She is willing to listen to both sides of the story regardless of an employee’s position. She sees issues raised as an opportunity to improve standards and is proactive in bringing these to the attention of other managers. A recent example of this was when Angela encouraged Nurse Unit Managers to change the start time for their pm bank staff from 13.00 to 13.30 hours, thereby allowing staff to meet hospital standards 6 & 9 (patient handover and clinical deterioration), by ensuring that bank staff were in attendance at the end of their shifts when there was no double staffing. This has been an ongoing issue for bank staff since the advent of the 7.36 hour shift time many years ago. Angela managed to bring this to the attention of the Nurse Unit Managers, many of whom were not aware of the risk it placed their patients under, nor the fact that in order to meet standards 6 and 9, bank staff were often being asked to stay back and were not paid for their time. Angela is an inspiration and excellent role model for all managers across Western Health.

Project Manager, Capital Development

During the year long project to establish Westside Lodge Dual Diagnosis Rehabilitation Centre at Sunshine Hospital Barb went above and beyond to help us ensure the Department of Health & Human Services, builders and architects were held accountable to deliver the capital component of the project properly and without cutting corners. Barb worked tirelessly to ensure all building codes and safety requirements were adhered to and without her knowledge in this area, we would have struggled. Nothing was ever too much trouble for Barb. She was always happy to help us out, and always with a smile. Without her expertise and constant diligence, the finished product would not be close to what we have, and as a result of her work, both staff and the community benefit enormously.

Medical Imaging Technologist, Footscray Radiology

Without doubt the department would struggle without Carly’s exceptional skills with rostering. She works tirelessly to ensure the rostering is balanced and that work/life balance is maintained. Carly is compassionate and accommodating when it comes to staff rostering requests.  Staff personal situations are always taken into account to ensure the best possible outcomes for everyone. Carly is without doubt the hardest working radiographer at Western Health. Her role constantly sees her working late at night to manipulate rosters to ensure staff are well looked after without compromising the radiology service and sticking within budget constraints. She is essentially on call 24 hours a day 7 days a week and never complains about the volume of work that her role entails. Her commitment to the position and performing the duties well, extends to the point of working on her annual leave to ensure she keeps abreast of everything. Carly always communicates respectfully in all situations to patients and staff throughout the hospital. She is approachable and always helps out in any way that she possibly can. No request is ever too much for Carly. No matter what the situation, Carly is always positive and maintains high quality standards. Without a doubt, Carly is worth her weight in gold and deserves recognition for working at such a ridiculously high level for so long.



Nurse Unit Manager – Paediatric Specialist Clinics and Immunisation Services

Clarissa is an outstanding nurse and clinic Nurse Unit Manager. She goes above and beyond to make sure our clinic provides the best possible care to the children of the West. Clarissa has Indefatigable enthusiasm and dedication. She supports and encourages all clinic staff to do and be their best in their role. She has an unbelievable determination to overcome obstacles, solve problems, support colleagues, and does it all with kindness and positive leadership attributes.


Registered Nurse, Emergency Department Footscray

Daniel is exceptionally kind and caring to all of his patients. He has a unique ability to calm them even when they are scared and confused. He always takes the time to reassure and assist them in anyway he can to make sure they are comfortable. Daniel never comes across short or rushed, always taking the time to show real compassion and care. He ensures that his patients are safe and that they understand what will happen to them whilst they are in ED. Daniel is an exceptional nurse who truly stands out for his patient centred care.

Carpenter, Engineering – Sunshine Hospital

Daryl actively supports the Community Engagement Program that Sunshine Hospital has with local schools. Over the two years, Daryl has gone out of his way to ensure that the effort the students put into their projects is reflected in the way that he installs the projects into the relevant areas of Sunshine Hospital. This year in particular, he went out of his way to offer support to the students involved in the St Albans Secondary College Partnership. The students were all 17 and 18 year olds who were participating in the projects as part of their last year at secondary school. These students showed great initiative in researching and planning and then designing and installing a new bedroom and kitchen space in the Community Based Rehabilitation Treatment Room. This room was uninspiring and community feedback had led the staff in that Division to request support from the Community Engagement Program. Daryl spent time in ensuring that the installation happened when it needed to, was respectful to the workspace when completing the installation and showed great patience with these students as he shared some of his expertise and skills. Daryl demonstrated compassion and understanding in the way that he worked with the students to ensure that their projects could be “the best that they could be” and was accountable for the work that he did. The students appreciated that level of accountability and mirrored this in their project outcomes. The final product demonstrated a high level of excellence and I personally witnessed Daryl ensuring that no short cuts were taken to make sure that the final outcome looked as good as it does. Daryl demonstrated respect for the students in the way that he would listen to their ideas and take the time to answer their questions, which enabled him to establish a great rapport and level of trust with them. He modelled respectful behaviour in the way that he conducted himself and interacted with staff from CBR, which ensured that these young people knew how to behave in a workplace. The students commented in their presentation on how they enjoyed working with Daryl and because of his attitude, those students went away from Sunshine Hospital with a positive experience of how the staff at this workplace behave towards each other- no matter what area that they work in.



Radiologist, Nuclear Medicine – Radiology

Darryl demonstrates unique humility and care for not only those who work with him but importantly the patients within his care. We have all worked with Darryl for many years and each and every time, Darryl makes himself available to accommodate and prioritise patients, for example rearranging schedules in order to accommodate timely breast biopsies. Darryl is always polite and respectful of others, however his work with the men and women diagnosed with breast cancer displays exemplary empathy and compassion. Recently a young patient was very distressed and suffered a panic attack prior to undergoing a nuclear medicine procedure. Darryl not only sat with the patient to explain and reassure about the procedure but he also simulated the procedure himself, lying down and interacting with the machine to emulate the procedure she was about to undertake. Darryl liaises constantly with all disciplines of the breast service. He often directly contacts other consultants if he is concerned regarding recent imaging or he may simply be inquiring into the wellbeing of a patient since undergoing a procedure. Darryl does not see himself or the team as  separate entities, but rather ,a multidisciplinary interactive entity. He is humble, light hearted, hard working and genuinely cares for the breast services team and its patients. Darryl consistently adheres to the Western Health Values and is a role model for many around him.

Midwifery Group Practice Midwife – Women’s & Children’s Services

Ellie consistently goes over and above what is required to provide excellent care to the group of women in her caseload. She is also always willing to help all other staff whenever she can and is a good mentor to less experienced midwives. Recently Ellie accompanied a woman that was not part of her caseload, to an emergency Caesarean Section when there was not a midwife available. She provided excellent care to this patient as she does with all the woman in her care. Ellie is very kind and compassionate in the care that she provides to her patients and seems to be very in tune with them. She has a unique ability to be able to anticipate what fears or questions the women may have and the calm and respectful manner in which she communicates and listens to her patients helps to alleviate any concerns or fears that they may have. She frequently receives positive feedback from the women in her caseload. Ellie has the insight to reflect on her practice with the aim of constantly improving. She often seeks out senior midwifery advice when she encounters a professionally challenging situation and is always willing to take on board her colleagues points of view. Ellie is good natured with a well-developed sense of humour and everyone feels better when they are working with her.


Registrar, Ward 3B – Footscray Hospital

We had a very confused lady on the ward who had a number of code greys called due to her behaviours, being an absconding risk, as well as having to have medication administered to try and subdue her behaviour.  Haider on several occasions would sit and talk to her to de-escalate the situation, which was often successful.  After a number of attempts to abscond, it was decided that the best place for this patient was the DMU at Sunshine Hospital.  We knew that she was not going to go willingly, so we asked Haider, once a planned code grey was called, to sit and talk about the transfer with her.  He spent quite some time talking and more importantly listening to her and was able to get her to start to pack her things, which he assisted with, and get on to the transport trolley with minimal assistance.  At no time did security have to intervene, nor did the patient require to be medicated for the transfer to the DMU. Haider demonstrated enormous compassion for this patient by taking time out of his very busy day to sit and listen to her, even though she was having to be redirected on a number of occasions. When she asked questions or needed clarification, he would take the time to explain things to her.  It was great to see the Registrar, NUM, NIC, security and patient transport staff all work together to develop a plan which would ensure that the patient received the care she needed. Open communication was maintained throughout the process with Haider leading the way with his interactions with the patient.  The outcome for this patient was better than what we had anticipated thanks to the actions of Haider.


Volunteer, Social Support – Sunshine Hospital

Heidi’s caring and non-judgemental nature allows her to attend the hospital and provide social support to patients who may be isolated or in need of companionship. Her 14 years of dedication to her local hospital and community, is evident as she attends the hospital twice a week, spending 4 hours per day visiting the different patients in the wards. If there is a request for a patient who would benefit from a visit, Heidi is the first to accept and attend to them. Her caring and friendly demeanour fills the hospital when she arrives and visits in the wards, She is able to converse with patients from many different nationalities and make them feel comfortable and at ease. When the hospital has any fundraising event, Heidi is always there and willing to do whatever is required or requested on the day. She always welcomes any request for any additional support that the Volunteer program may ask from her. Public health has been improved with Heidi’s volunteer shifts, as she is a bridge between the medical and professional field and the local community. She shares her life stories with empathy and humour with the patients and carers and her friendly reassuring smile, which is always a welcome sight to the patients/carers. Heidi has a giving nature and spirit and truly wants to help wherever it is needed. She is compassionate and respectful and ensures that her interactions with staff and patients alike are done so with the utmost of care, courtesy and dignity. Her non judgement behaviour allows her to interact with patients from a range of different nationalities and cultures and her she brings a “normalness” to the wards, when she visits. Her empathetic nature allows the patient a diversion and an ability to focus away from the hospital procedures and encourages a “normal” conversation, creating a positive and happy atmosphere within the hospital.


Volunteer Retail Assistant, The Williamstown Opportunity Shop

Jenny Watson has strengthened the capacity for the Williamstown Hospital Opportunity Shop to raise more funds through sharing her knowledge and her local networks and contacts that she made from her previous antique business. This has created sustainable, positive and supportive local relationships for Western Health. Jenny has also created new contacts to help with appraisals and provide in-kind valuations through her knowledge of local business. There have been many volunteers that have benefited from her training who have since developed an interest in collectible items and having this knowledge has increased their confidence.  This sharing of knowledge has enabled the team to strengthen their skills in identifying items of high value when they are donated. This also strengthens the capacity of the shop to capitalise on sales. Jenny is always very mindful of ensuring transparency and follows processes outlined in policies and procedures. Being accountable is especially important when movement of stocks occurs off site or when there is a sale of stock to third parties and Jenny always ensures that this is managed with honesty and integrity.  Jenny is very respectful to her team members and has shown great leadership and passion, and has passed on her passion for antiques to others, which in turn helps the local community, strengthens partnerships for Williamstown Hospital Opportunity Shop and strengthens the capacity for the shop to retain that knowledge and increase funds raised.


Clinical Pharmacist, Pharmacy Services – Footscray Hospital

Jo is a senior member of the clinical pharmacy team and a leader and mentor for our junior pharmacists. Jo’s energy and enthusiasm towards improving processes and patient care underscores her many achievements. Jo has been proactive in contributing ideas on how we can improve dispensary and clinical pharmacy services for the benefit of our patients. Her leadership role leading up to the launch of EMR was evident when she took the initiative to do morning hands on practice sessions with EMR for clinical pharmacists. Jo always has the patients’ best interest at heart; often staying back to ensure patients were adequately reviewed and going out of her way to ensure late discharge patients receive their medications and appropriate counselling. Jo always has a positive, “can-do” attitude. Rather than presenting issues without solutions, she comes prepared with ideas and ideas that work. Rather than enforcing her ideas, Jo always brings them up in group discussions and staff meetings and engages and seeks feedback from her colleagues. In addition to Jo’s years of clinical experience and deep clinical knowledge, she has proposed and helped implement numerous process improvement changes, such as regularly reviewing ward medication imprest cupboards to ensure the most commonly used items are kept on the ward. This improves patient access to medications, reduces the number of orders that need to be filled by pharmacy and saves costs. Jo also proposed a modified non-imprest supply process whereby the amounts of medication dispensed for inpatient use varied with the day of the week with the aim of not running out on weekends. This both improves patient access to medications and reduces the number of orders that come down to pharmacy on weekends when there is limited staff. Jo’s experience, leadership and attitude has earned her a promotion to acting Clinical Pharmacy Coordinator. As a mentor to her more junior team members, Jo always has their interests at heart and is able to mobilise resources to where they are needed in times of difficulty.  Jo has a positive, motivated attitude and always strives to improve both patient care and pharmacy processes and with it, staff wellbeing. Jo is a role model for all and is well respected by her peers.


People and Culture Business Partner – People, Culture and Safety

Joanne has led the way in developing the Aboriginal employment plan and ensuring the successful engagement of our Aboriginal people in developing a pathway for career opportunities. Joanne has been working on Aboriginal employment and engagement initiatives for over 2 years and brings with her an extraordinary passion and cultural awareness to the work and to our Aboriginal trainees. She has directly managed six trainees in the last 18 months and has allocated them across the organisation to ensure they receive a breadth of experience, all the while ensuring their cultural safety and demonstrating her care for their personal wellbeing. Joanne has been instrumental in connecting with employment agencies and the community to shine a light on the propensity for WH to provide career and employment opportunities for Aboriginal people. Without her contribution WH would not have the well earned respect of the local community and or be attracting trainees to commence their careers with us. Joanne goes above and beyond being a manager to ensure she cares for her trainees. In one instance she continued to reach out to a trainee in whatever messaging form she could use to contact her. Joanne wanted to make sure this trainee understood that WH cared for her and wanted to let her know how we would support her in any situation, ensuring she could come back to work as soon as possible. Joanne creates great relationships with recruitment and employment agencies and ensures there is always follow up, monitoring and collaboration for the programs WH join. Respect is evident in the way in which Joanne understands and works within cultural norms and actively promotes and lives Aboriginal cultural safety. She was a member on the DHHS sector wide Aboriginal employment strategy and within that committee developed a specific online cultural awareness video that will be used across the public sector as a training tool. Joanne lives and actively breathes Aboriginal cultural safety by caring for the trainees and making their WH experience meaningful as well as learning from them how we can do better and provide more for Aboriginal people at WH. Joanne is constantly checking in on both personal welfare and how they are coping with their work and or barriers that prevent them being able to be their best version of themselves. This ensures every Aboriginal trainee gets to experience a positive WH approach and engagement in our workplace.


Radiologist, Radiology

John is constantly trying to improve the way we do things in Radiology, whether it is setting up and testing new protocols/sequences in MRI that result in the patient spending less time in the scanner, while improving diagnostic sensitivity or supervising the creation of paediatric protocols in  x-ray to ensure best practice is maintained. He has also taken it upon himself to look at changing general radiography protocols to reduce and eliminate unnecessary patient dose. John is extremely approachable and gracious, which sometimes works to his detriment as he is constantly approached by staff asking for his expertise on a multitude of radiological and medical topics. John is dedicated to improving the quality and experience for all patients coming into the radiology department. He has a friendly disposition and everyone loves him. John is highly intelligent and is fantastic at teaching and educating staff. He is also very modest. He is constantly looking at changing practices to ensure we are delivering the best possible care to our patients. John treats everyone with respect and dignity. Although John is such a nice person he stands his ground when required and does it in a professional and respectful manner. He is truly an asset to Western Health.


Volunteer, Social Support

Khoi has volunteered at Western Health for over 9 years. During this time he visits both the Sunshine and Footscray campuses and provides the patients with an opportunity to interact. Isolation can be a major concern for any patients in a hospital, however with Khoi’s social support he attempts to alleviate this growing concern. Khoi is able to build a rapport and communicate with the patient and sometimes their carer. He is able to create a pathway that enables a patient to speak with him regarding their fears, concerns or just provide an avenue of diversion from the everyday hospital routine. The staff on the wards are aware of his regular weekly visits and provide him with the correct support for the appropriate patients. These visits may play an important role in times of illness and stress and provide patients with the comfort of knowing that there is someone who is happy and interested in talking to them and getting to know them. Khoi speaks Vietnamese and his strong links with his community allows him to promote and encourage members of his community to become involved with WH. Khoi is a very compassionate person who displays an empathetic and non-judgemental attitude when he listens and converses with the patients. In all of his communications Khoi responds and communicates in a respectful and empathetic manner. I have joined Khoi on his visits and when he communicates, he speaks with the patients and not at them. He considers their feelings and he listens to them and allows them to express themselves in a safe environment. Khoi emanates a calm and accepting persona and approaches each patient with the utmost of respect immediately putting them at ease.


Senior Dietitian and Clinical Educator, Nutrition/Dietetics

Kim received two nominations for an Inspire Award.

Nomination 1 – Kim provides practical strategies and opportunities to debrief while we juggle busy workloads and the supervision of clinical students. Kim has also done an enormous amount of work on improving the service of the nutritional management of women with Gestational Diabetes (GD) at Western Health and has presented interstate to share her learning’s and knowledge. Kim ensures she is available to both staff and students who need that extra bit of “TLC”. We are encouraged to contact her if we need to debrief, or talk through a tricky scenario, or if juggling our workload with students becomes a bit too much. Kim advocates for group based learning opportunities, offering a space for the sharing of case studies, ideas, nutritional management and student supervision. Kim communicates  respectfully with all staff, values the ideas of others and encourages the sharing of information within our department and the health service. As well as her role as a clinical educator, Kim is always the person to ask, “but why do we do it that way? Asking this question leads to innovation and to motivating our department to endeavour to provide gold standard dietetics care. Kim leads the way in encouraging us to improve the way we practise and be open to new and improved patient care. Her enthusiasm towards providing excellence demonstrates the importance of accountability, responsibility and safety. In a workplace where everyone has too much on their plate already, it is great to have staff members like Kim who are passionate about reviewing our service and ensuring we continue to provide gold standard services to our patients. She is very friendly, approachable and caring and advocates for a non-judgemental workplace.

Nomination 2 – Kim is an amazing Dietitian and clinical educator for the nutrition department. She effectively leads the dietetic student program and oversees the upskilling of staff in providing student supervision. Kim also works in maternity outpatient clinics alongside obstetricians and endocrinologists in managing complex maternity patients. She does all this in a part time role, whilst also juggling commitments as a mother to two young children. Through Kim’s work in maternity, she identified a large service gap for the delivery of nutrition care to patients with Gestational Diabetes. Starting off as a quality improvement activity into Gestational Diabetes management (GDM), Kim was able to turn this into a larger project to benchmark nutrition care in GDM across Victoria and successfully advocated for additional funding for a Dietitian to work in the GDM space. Kim cares about her patients and always strongly advocates for their nutrition. She also cares about students and does her best in organising a clinical student program that meets the needs of the students as well as taking into account the departments’ other commitments. As the clinical educator, Kim provides a lot of support to primary supervising Dietitians to provide appropriate feedback to students and help manage struggling students. Kim is well respected and equally shows respect to her work colleagues and patients. She demonstrates compassion and understanding for patients from different backgrounds and cultures, always taking into account how an individual’s culture can impact on their health beliefs and diet. Kim has high standards of care and is a resourceful dietitian with a collaborative approach to managing patients as well as running the dietetic student program. She demonstrates high emotional intelligence and is able to flex towards different personalities in various teams across the health services.


Maternity Connect Coordinator, Centre for Education

Kylie has transformed the Maternity Connect Program, which is a state-wide service to enable exposure of regional and rural midwives to maternity services in larger, more complex services. This program ensures the safety of maternity services across the state whilst also being a strategy to retain midwives in the profession. Kylie is a compassionate midwife in her role as a frontline clinician and espouses compassionate midwifery in her dealing with midwives and service providers utilising the maternity connect service. She is incredibly respectful not only of individual midwives accessing the services of Maternity Connect, but also understanding of the differences in capability in health services and supporting development in a respectful way. Kylie has transformed the way midwives and service providers access the Maternity Connect Program with a reinvigorated, simplified process to assist in managing the overall program. Kylie addresses strategic safety as the program is fundamentally based on principles of governance and safety for alI maternity service providers. Safety is central to the work she has undertaken. Kylie has a positive ‘can do’ attitude in her role which supports not only local services but also extends the positivity state-wide.


Volunteer, Car Maintenance – Sunshine Hospital

Before Lance commenced in this role at the hospital, the cars that were being utilised by the staff to do home assessments and visits were not maintained to a great standard. Since Lance has been attending to the fleet cars, staff have noticed that the cars are always of a higher and cleaner standard. An employee from the Immediate Response Service stated –  “Lance has been an incredible asset to our service. He has overcome a number of challenges in servicing the vehicles for community services including the rather large obstacle of how to clean cars when they are needed on the road. Lance came up with a solution to have a rotating car roster with an appropriate time frame between vehicle cleaning and maintenance and arrives early to ensure that the cleaning is completed prior to the clinical need. He is a positive influence always with a cheery greeting and his absence during breaks are always felt. It is wonderful to have such a dedicated volunteer”. Lance’s dedication to his role, the safety of staff and his positive attitude makes him an asset to the Volunteer Team and Western Health.


Registered Nurse, Ward 3B – Footscray Hospital

Lina was nominated by a patient’s family who had the following to say about her – “We found Lina to be ever pleasant and willing to assist my mother. No task was too difficult and she handled my mothers care professionally and more importantly empathetically. She was always willing to listen to our requests and take action when needed. We found her very caring to all of her patients. We certainly need more nurses like Lina.”



Security Team Leader, Sunshine Hospital

Mario consistently provides a high level of leadership to the Security team at Sunshine Hospital. As a team leader Mario has been required to lead the security response to a number of serious incidents. Mario deals with these incidents in a way that effectively resolves the situation and provides staff involved with an enhanced sense of safety. He is highly respected for his professionalism by everyone he deals with. Mario is often required to deal with situations involving vulnerable patients. He works to resolve situations in a way that maintains the dignity of those involved. Mario consistently leads his team and takes on responsibility to ensure the delivery of a safe and secure environment for our patients, staff and visitors. Through his leadership, Mario contributes to providing a safe environment where staff can provide the best level of care possible. The enhanced sense of safety provided to staff through Mario’s leadership makes a direct contribution to staff feeling safe at work.


Switchboard Operator, Communications – Footscray Hospital

Mary has a huge wealth of knowledge of which she never hesitates to share with her colleagues.  She is the ‘go to’ person when you need help because of her ability to explain situations to her work colleagues. I’m always saying “if she were ever to leave the department we will somehow have to download the information stored inside her brain.” Mary has excellent work ethics, is always happy and approaches her working day with a positive approach. Mary gets along with everyone and has a fantastic approach to her work. I have never heard Mary complain about her work load. She will just sit there and answer call after call or code after code. No situation is too difficult for her. Mary always treats her fellow colleagues and clients, both internal and external, with utmost of respect. No matter how she receives the conversations she will always take the time to listen to the clients concerns and direct them to the correct area. Nothing is a problem for Mary, no matter what the situation may be. Having wonderful colleagues to work with like Mary promotes a positive work place as her positivity seems to spread throughout the department.


Volunteer, Sunshine Hospital

Maureen has been volunteering for over 13 years at Western Health. She takes great pride in her roles as a visitor guide and support to both the Heath Information Centre and the busy Day Procedure Unit. An employee of DPU stated – “Maureen is the most delightful volunteer. When she arrives she greets everyone with a beautiful smile. She is very well respected by all staff within the department and always goes out of her way to talk to everyone. Nothing is too much trouble for Maureen and she is always willing to help in whatever way she can. She is wonderful with the patients and relatives and is always ready to sit with an anxious family member and has such a lovely calm manner. Maureen is a perfect example of the Western Health values and we all enjoy working with her”. At all times, Maureen strives to complete her roles in a cheerful, courteous and professional manner. She is very compassionate and understands that members of the public can be anxious when entering the hospital. To alleviate their stress she ensures that she provides them with her full attention, listens to them and supports them in any way that she can. Maureen with her friendly and helpful manner fosters a positive workplace at Western Health by completing all her roles/shifts with a warm greeting in her happy English accent and a welcoming smile. Other team members have the assurance that she will always attend her shifts and is always there to assist the team in any way she believes will support the hospital and the patients.


Ward Clerk, Ward 2F

Melissa displays a very professional manner and completes her work in an efficient way each and every time she comes to work. She is very dedicated to her role and takes pride in her work. She gets along with all staff and always goes above and beyond for all, whether it be patients, colleagues or even visitors. She is always willing to provide a helping hand in any way that she can. Melissa demonstrates compassion by providing the correct information to patients and families and ensures that all enquires are promptly and accurately addressed and not just brushed off and ignored. Melissa abides by all policies and protocols of WH and ensures all work is complete, neat and tidy and finished by the end of each shift, particularly when she is dealing with confidentiality of patient histories. Melissa treats each and every person equally and is very compassionate when it comes to beliefs and grief. She comes across as a loving friend more than a stranger to everybody and puts everybody at ease with her big friendly smile and caring nature.


Patient Services Assistant, Birthing Suite -Sunshine Hospital

Mila is consistently great to work with and she loves to help others.  She is a hard worker, with a very high standard and an immense knowledge on stores and equipment.  Mila seems to genuinely enjoy caring for people.  She will always offer a smile and a listening ear to staff, especially when we’re feeling exhausted or overwhelmed.  Mila’s contact with women (patients) during an emergency demonstrates excellence.  She is gentle, non-intrusive, calm, shows great compassion and ensures as much privacy as possible.  Her demeanour in these situations has a calming effect on colleagues, women and visitors. Mila is always so keen to help in whatever way she can.  Her work is of exceptionally high quality and she is our “go-to” person if we need help with finding equipment, or trouble-shooting when equipment is broken.  She will ALWAYS stop what she’s doing (including cutting her meal break short) to help her colleagues.  Mila is open and friendly to everyone!  She approaches all colleagues, women and visitors with kindness, gentle enthusiasm and helpfulness. Mila consistently goes above and beyond in her role and ensures that all areas within the birthing suite are very clean and tidy. She is legendary at ensuring equipment is working properly, that stores are ordered in a timely way, that the store rooms are well-stocked and that birthing rooms are beautifully clean.  Furthermore, Mila is very responsive to the workplace environment; if there is any sort of hazard she responds immediately to reduce the risk to women, staff and visitors.  She takes this responsibility very seriously. Mila is proud of the birth suite midwives!  Our days are often very tiring, but we always feel valued by her. Knowing that she has our back, is very reassuring; especially during a crazily busy time.  For this I am so thankful.


A patient had the following to say about Reece – My mother was recently admitted with an acute respiratory illness to Footscray ICU. Reece was present when she was admitted and over the weekend of her intubation and stay in ICU. Reece always made time to discuss our families concerns and answer our questions. He was very caring toward our mother and to us, her family. He was very respectful of my mother and also of us as concerned relatives. Mum is now recovering and can recall his kindness to her in the ICU. I could hear Reece throughout the ICU clearly introduce himself to patients and family and conducted his conversations with patients and family at a level that they could understand.


Medical Imaging Technologist, Radiology – Footscray

Riperata has been an extremely hard worker ever since she started 11 years ago and has worked tirelessly to ensure patients receive their imaging in a timely manner. Further to this, she is constantly the hardest working member of any team she is a part of and always looks after our junior staff to make sure they are supported and educated on anything they may be unsure of. She has been a constant in ensuring the generals area runs smoothly and has taken on the responsibilities of managing the area when the supervisor has not been available, without ever expecting higher duties or administration time. Her clinical work is of the highest quality and she is a true asset to the department. Riperata always begins her shift before her actual allocated starting time in order to ease the load on her colleagues. She treats every patient with empathy and respect, ensuring that the experience within her care is as pleasant and professional as possible. Riperata leads by example, whether it be work ethic or the friendly and respectful way that she interacts with patients and staff throughout the hospital.


Director – Drug Health Services

Ruben provided invaluable guidance to the Project Manager during the year long project to establish Westside Lodge Dual Diagnosis Rehabilitation Centre. He assisted with navigating the broad and deep Western Health landscape in order to harness other departments and people in order to ensure that the project was delivered. Without Ruben’s assistance this process would have taken much longer. Ruben fostered a positive workplace through his assistance with the relationship building, which was crucial to being able to get a large project like this across the line.


Registered Nurse, Ward 2C

Sally has been employed on 2C for the last 3 years. She works extremely hard and is always a positive and energetic part of our team. Sally always strives to achieve best care for our patients and always ensures her team are well supported. She has a very holistic approach to care and always considers all factors both as an inpatient and their care in the community. She is very ambitious and is always looking for a challenge and new opportunities to grow and learn.

A patient had the following to say about Sally – “I found Sally to be an excellent nurse who was very supportive, friendly and skilled. She always had a smile on her face and was incredibly patient and professional at all times. She provided patient centred care and was a team player.”


Physiotherapist, Paediatric Physiotherapy – Sunshine Hospital

A patient had the following to say about Sam – Sam has been my physio since I was about 10 years old and has changed my life.  I’ve seen a lot of physios and he is the only one who looked outside the square and has actually helped me get stronger and better. Sam shows compassion every time I see him.  He listens to what I say and tries his best to understand.  When he  sets me my program he always tells me to let him know if its too much or too hard and says he doesn’t have all the answers so I have to help him.  That shows compassion and that he understands my pain. Sam is always upfront and tells me that the exercises might or might not work.  My disability is not easy to treat and its been so good for me to hear him say he doesn’t have the answers so we are working together. Sam always shows respect by listening to me and explaining things to me so I understand. He is very patient and never hurries through things. He even draws diagrams to help me to understand why he wants me to do an exercise and most importantly has a conversation each time I see him to make sure he knows where I am at with my joints. Everything Sam does displays excellence in his profession.  He goes above and beyond to help me and always comes up with a plan to help whatever injury I have. Sam always makes sure I am safe whenever we are in the pool or when we are using equipment by always watching me to make sure that I can use it correctly. Sam is the most positive health professional I see and I see a lot of them.  He always makes me feel like my disability and injuries are no big deal but at the same time takes them seriously.  He doesn’t minimise any injury and always has a smile on his face even when my injuries are tricky and difficult.  He is the best physio I have seen in my 16 years of having to see them!!


Associate Nurse Unit Manager, ICU – Sunshine Hospital

Sam demonstrated great leadership and a mature attitude in her approach to managing a very stressful and difficult shift involving both the traumatic death of a very unwell 20 year old patient and an OVA situation involving a patient who was under police arrest and on life support. Sam responded immediately to ensure the safety of those staff affected directly and nearby the OVA situation. She provided clear and concise communication to the team involved and around the patient to ensure that the situation was managed safely and effectively. Sam was able to balance her duty of care for both the patient and staff involved to ensure that an exceptional standard of care was provided to both her colleagues and the patient. Immediately following the OVA incident, Sam demonstrated compassion and respect in the prompt care she provided to the staff member directly involved to ensure their health and safety. She also demonstrated her care and concern for her colleagues by following up on their welfare outside of the workplace.


Senior Pharmacy Technician – Oncology Pharmacy Services – Sunshine Hospital

Sandra has a crucial role in leading the smooth running of the Oncology Pharmacy and sterile production suite. She ensures the timely and effective supply of chemotherapy and pharmaceutical products to significantly unwell patients of Western Health, while managing the challenging day-to-day operations for this high risk area. Without fail, Sandra will support pharmacy staff in all facets of work undertaken in the Oncology Pharmacy. No matter how busy Sandra is, she will always contribute to remedying a problem or request for assistance by effectively prioritising her own competing priority tasks to alleviate the stress from colleagues alongside her. This is particularly imperative to effective team work where errors or issues while working in a high stress/high risk area of cancer therapy supply can have severe negative impacts on patients/families and staff involved. Sandra undertakes and completes each task to the highest standard due to her meticulous attention to detail and an unrelenting drive for success to achieve desired outcomes, which benefit the team/department, patients and families and the wider Western Health organisation. She pays particular care and is highly responsive to financial variability of high cost pharmaceutical inventory, ensuring any discrepancy with pharmaceutical claims is identified and resolved. She is also careful and diligent with staff training to ensure sterile production is conducted to the highest possible standard to optimise patient outcomes for those who receive these therapies. Sandra is consistently respectful and non-prejudicial in her actions and interactions with colleagues and patients/families and demonstrates patience and understanding, no matter how much pressure she is under. Sandra exhibits an innate energy to foster working relationships with other team members and patients. She is always positive and enthusiastic with her role in leading fellow technicians and working effectively and collaboratively with other members of the Unit to strive for better staff and patient outcomes.



Visitor Guide, Sunshine Hospital

Sylvio received two nominations for an Inspire Award:

Nomination 1 – A patient had the following to say about Silvio – “Silvio was happy, funny and great with my son on our visit to Sunshine Hospital. He was also very helpful and made us feel as though we were in good hands. In a world of complex technology and processes, nothing can ever replace the personal touch and guidance that we received from Silvio. What an asset to the hospital he is.”

Nomination 2 – Silvio’s role as a visitor guide sees him interacting with various members of the public and hospital community. He continuously attends to his shift with a happy “can do” attitude and you can always hear his infectious laugh throughout the main reception area. Silvio is a constant source of reassurance for many people who may be nervous and unsure when they enter the hospital. In all instances, he displays the hospital values and is diligent in ensuring that all for whom he encounters feels a sense of calm and assurance that they will arrive at the correct destination. Silvio is always happy to volunteer for any extra requests or events that may require additional support.  This may include the recently held Walk West or coming into support any additional requests such as hospital or educational tours. His pride in his role is evident, as he greets everyone with a smile and a warm welcome, making an otherwise anxious visit feel a little more at ease. Silvio is very kind and compassionate towards all who he encounters. A great example of this is when he came to the assistance of an elderly couple who presented to the reception area. The husband was unsure of where to go and what to do regarding parking and finding a wheel chair for his wife. Silvio reassured both of them, assisted with locating a wheel chair, and checked them into the appropriate clinic. He then assisted them with the parking when they were ready to leave the hospital. I have witnessed Silvio’s interactions with patients, staff and the public and every time he is polite, courteous and respectful to the person and their story. He welcomes people with a smile before introducing himself and his role. His actions always have a positive impact on those he encounters which is evident in the many feedback forms received from the public who have identified him as the reason that their hospital experience was a positive one.


Citrix Systems Administrator, DTS

When major IT systems go down, the unsung heroes are the members within the Server Team who are frantically working in the background to get the system back up for Western Health employees to care for patients. Working on a Service Desk can become stressful as we receive a large volume of phone calls asking for updates. Whenever we are faced with these situations, we are always at ease when Stan is available to assist. Rather than ask multiple questions to delay the process, Stan understands the urgency of the issue and immediately responds. He is always in constant communication with the team, providing us updates and resolutions. Whenever he is making changes which may cause issues, he ensures that he emails the team on what the changes are and what the affects may be, as well as making himself available to immediately fix any issues that may arise. Stan uses his technical expertise to improve our internal processes, which has resulted in quicker resolution times for our employees. The biggest accomplishment Stan has brought into the organisation is the development of the Citrix environment. Without the foundation and continuous work Stan has made to the Citrix environment, a number of projects such as the EMR and ‘Single Sign On’ of workstations would not have been possible. Our technical opinion of Stan is that when you have an issue that you cannot resolve, Stan will be the one you turn to as he is always willing to help and will always source a solution. Even though Stan does not directly interact with patients, the work he has done for the DTS Department in delivering technical solutions for the organisation has contributed to the improvement of patient care.


Greek Interpreter, Language Services

Steve always goes above and beyond in assisting our clients to get the most out of their session. He consistently demonstrates Western Health’s values  in the way that he conducts himself with both staff and patients. Community Based Rehabilitation’s Musculoskeletal team really enjoy working with Steve, and are assured to have a terrific session due to his efforts. Steve always ensures that the patient entirely understands every piece of information, and strives to convey any request or query the patient may have. Steve helps create a safe working environment for both patients and staff through taking time to consider and listen to the patient, and always seeks to clarify when needed to assist in delivering best care to the patient. Steve often physically demonstrates to the patient after the physiotherapist has demonstrated an activity, in order to ensure optimal patient understanding. Steve allows a cohesive flow between physiotherapist and patient and assists in delivery excellent care to our clients.


Occupational Therapist, Sunshine Hospital

Taylah started seeing a very complex gentleman on the ward who needed extra wide equipment, was experiencing financial hardship to be able to pay for the equipment he needed, had difficulties understanding information, and who’s family was challenging to engage in supporting him. This gentleman had come in after spending a year being nursed in bed because of significant pain in his legs, which was a big change in his level of function given that he was fairly young. Taylah could see that this gentleman’s quality of life was really poor, and could see that this could be improved with some occupational therapy. Taylah advocated strongly within the team for the ability to spend more time to improve this gentleman’s level of performance from lying in bed to being able to get into his wheelchair, access his shower and access his toilet. She made this happen in a very short amount of time, and made a massive impact on this gentleman’s quality of life.  Taylah ensured that the team was kept abreast of how she was progressing this gentleman, given the goals she had to meet with this patient prior to discharge. Taylah was unwavering in her determination to help this gentleman achieve a better quality of life. It required her to advocate very strongly in her team to meet these basic goals with him. Taylah ensured that the family and patient had training on using the equipment she was prescribing (even though she had difficulties with his level of understanding, and with difficulties engaging the family). She completed two home assessments to ensure the right equipment was obtained. Taylah worked hard within the team to ensure this was a positive discharge, and worked closely with the physiotherapist to ensure a positive outcome for this gentleman.



Sharon Collard – Nurse Unit Manager, Dr Liz Feher and Dr Sabrina Kohler – Consultant Geriatricians and 2A Nursing Staff

Ward 2A received two nominations:

Nomination 1 – Sharon, the medical team and nursing staff demonstrated extraordinary leadership when managing an extremely complex patient. The 57 year old patient was admitted on the background of an intellectual disability and recent housing issues due to his father (who was his primary carer) being admitted to a residential aged care facility. The patients acute care needs were minimal, however he was requiring 1:1 security special for approximately 6 weeks on all shifts due to his aggressive behaviour, which made him a high security risk to staff, patients and visitors. The immediate management plan was unclear at the time and staff were anxious about looking after him. Sharon, Dr Feher and Dr Kohler led this situation and developed a comprehensive behaviour management plan, whilst continuing to look after the patient with respect, dignity and compassion. Additionally, they sought the expert opinion of an external psychiatrist experienced in managing intellectual impairment. They were able to engage all the staff on the ward to follow this plan and over a period of a few weeks, the patient’s behaviour improved significantly, to the point that the security special was no longer required and he was able to walk around the ward and hospital independently, without any further incidents. The team was able to work in an open, honest and safe environment, which created a better workplace environment for all. As the patient’s behaviour on the ward was now manageable, his wishes of being discharged to a community house to live independently rather than in residential aged care, were able to be achieved. The motivating and inspiring outcome for this patient exemplifies excellence in best care at Western Health and is a remarkable achievement for all those involved in caring for him.

Nomination 2 – Ward 2A have many patients who enter with difficult health care needs. The patients often exhibit confusion as a result of their severe illness or have more permanent impairment of judgement due to dementia. All members of this ward do an amazing job providing health care services in a manner which is professional, and seeks to support our patients and their families through the difficult times they experience. It is important to state that the compassion shown by this Ward goes far beyond professional standards. No matter what medical challenges they are faced with the team always ensures they provide a gentle and kind voice to reassure their patients and calm those who may feel distressed. They provide distressed family members with the support, reassurance and most importantly the information they need to help them feel calm. This team also ensures they are supporting each other in all aspects of their work and they consistently demonstrate a great respect and camaraderie for each other. There is always friendly interaction between staff and a strong sense of community, which makes working and visiting Ward 2A a positive experience.


Rob Tindall, Milan Gluhak, Kerry Price, Stanton Halik, Lourdes Ward & Mai Nguyen

This small team of volunteers maintain the garden spaces at Sunshine on a weekly basis. Whenever patients and family members are in the gardens the volunteers interact with them and offer them the opportunity to water the garden, discuss the garden and even take home some of the produce. Over the last 7 years that the program has been operating there have been many situations where the volunteers have had a specific impact on the patient’s experience. An example of this was when a patient from Secure Gem had a real interest in gardens and wanted to contribute to the garden space. One of the volunteers, created a space within the garden specifically for the patient to maintain for the period of time that he was an inpatient. The patient managed to plant out the garden space and spent his days tending to it. The staff reported that his behaviour was more manageable and it gave him a real focus for each day while he was on the ward. This team are able to offer another level of risk management within these garden spaces. They report any issues that they witness and provide feedback on the general wellbeing of the families and patients visiting the gardens, which can then be followed up accordingly. Over the past 7 years, the volunteers have undertaken specific training in supporting patients with Dementia and this ongoing interaction between the volunteers and some staff has allowed the garden spaces to be a real space for reflection and relaxation. The volunteers show great respect for the patients through the gentle and considerate manner in which they engage with them and offer them opportunities to participate in the garden. Each member of the small volunteer team has brought their own personality and skill set to this role. For example, one of the volunteers was the recipient of the 2015 Minister for Health Volunteer Awards – ‘Improving the patient experience  Award’ for the time he spent with a patient from Secure Gem writing up recipes that this patient wanted to be able to remember to pass onto his family. Another volunteer assisted with the discussions on gaining compost bins in the gardens to assist with garden management, whilst other members of this team have donated items to enhance the garden space. This small team meet bi monthly to discuss the issues, share ideas and implement actions that must occur to keep the gardens looking as beautiful as they currently do. This team ensure that the time spent in the garden by staff, patients and family members is a positive experience.


Annette Justin, Stephanie Haering, Linda Gibb, Vita Giovano, Sia Zoumbilis  & Inge Bakker

This team are a very supportive group of people that help do extremely complex administration tasks across different clinics and campuses. They efficiently undertake numerous different processes that are required to keep the clinic’s running smoothly, which supports the clinician’s ability to provide best care for our patients. Working across two sites, with different job tasks is often very difficult for this team, however they do so without complaint and always demonstrate complete accountability for all that they do. This team demonstrate compassion and kindness in all of their interactions, whether they be face to face or on the telephone. Respect is always shown to patient, families and other clinic staff at all times and they consistently display a happy and cheerful manner which ensures that the workplace is a positive one for all. We couldn’t do without this team of individuals.


Allied Health, Nursing, Medical and Education staff

This team came together to care for a patient that had complex medical conditions, significantly impacting his ability to function independently on a daily basis. The team cared for this patient for over a year (leading to all staff learning and implementing specific skills, in a compassionate manner) and investigated a range of options for his long term home in the community. The team worked hard to ensure a successful and supportive discharge for this patient into his new home, where the patient did not think he would be able to leave the hospital. They cared for the individual needs of the patient for an extended period of time and followed up all possible avenues to ensure a safe discharge into the community, overcoming many challenges and barriers.


Nursing & Medical staff

This team was nominated by patient’s family who had the following to say: “I am writing to express my heart felt gratitude for the excellent care, kindness and consideration that my wife received from the doctors and nurses whilst she was a patient on Ward 2D. Fifty days of treatment, coupled with the wonderful caring attitude of ward 2D staff, helped my wife to attain a fast recovery and she is now feeling much better at home. We are very thankful but didn’t know how best to express this, so we made a short video clip to share with you our experiences and memories with our doctors and nurses.”



Members of the EMR Project team are pictured with Russell Harrison, Chief Executive – WH

With a limited budget in comparison to other EMR implementations, Western Health had to call on the Western Health spirit to drive their implementation across the line. Successfully introducing the EMR at Western Health was everyone’s priority, the approach had the dedicated support of every member of staff and it was the whole organisation driving together that secured an outstandingly successful implementation.  Those fortunate to visit Western Health during their Go-Live have remarked upon the amazing camaraderie and teamwork evident across the organisation. The decision taken in March 2018 to delay the Go-Live was a brave one but critical in ensuring patient safety. Under new leadership, a new Go-Live date was set for November 2018 with the implementation planned for the 5 sites over 5 weeks. The delay allowed the EMR team time to overcome difficult technical and clinical challenges to deliver the successful Go-Live. The EMR team displayed outstanding proactivity and positivity in supporting each other throughout the entire project.  They consistently demonstrated the WH values in always taking accountability for their work, ensuring that patient safety was always at the centre of any decision making and demonstrating compassion, respect and excellence through open and transparent conversations with all staff. Everyone in the team went above and beyond to ensure that the organisation had confidence in the transition to the EMR. Every time a question or concern was raised, the EMR Team listened patiently and always aimed to provide a better workplace environment. The 5 week implementation period was an especially stressful time, as the organisation was undergoing its largest ever change and the EMR team was stretched thin through supporting all 5 sites towards the end. Nevertheless, this team was always positive and helpful. Every time help was required on a specific ward, the EMR team would quickly attend. Every time an extra shift needed to be covered, a member of the team would immediately put their hand up. The positivity and dedication of the EMR Team resulted in such a successful Go-Live and an incredible achievement and significant milestone in our provision of Best Care for our patients. Members of the EMR Team have presented to other similar hospitals (Northern Health and Monash Health) who are about to start their EMR journey. Later on this year, members of the team have also been invited to present to the Cerner Annual Regional User Group as well as the Victorian Healthcare Week 2019.


Occupational Therapy Allied Health Assistants, Inpatient Rehabilitation Ward

Daniela and Michelle are pictured with Russell Harrison, Chief Executive – WH

Daniela and Michelle are very passionate and hardworking Allied Health Assistants that form an integral part of the Occupational Therapy (OT) service on the Inpatient Rehabilitation Ward. Over the past 2 years they have been the key leaders facilitating the success of the partnership between Western Health and local secondary schools, to complete a variety of projects on the ward to enrich the environment and optimise the patient experience. Their passion and drive to provide best care for the patients on the ward has allowed them to take the skills they have developed through working with the secondary school students and apply this to a new and innovate group program that the OT department rolled out on the Rehabilitation Ward in 2018. This was the introduction of a volunteer lead leisure group held once weekly. Daniela and Michelle have supported this program to be developed, implemented and evaluated throughout 2018, and through this, have strengthened relationships with our hospital volunteer service and allowed for new and exciting opportunities, both from a patient engagement point of view and through building capacity and new skills amongst the volunteer service. The leisure group has fostered a positive workplace on many different levels; it has allowed for new and different social opportunities for the patients, greater access to engagement in occupations and activities when on the ward and has allowed our volunteer service the opportunity to develop new skills and increase their breadth of service. Daniela and Michelle have shown strengths in valuing the importance of consumer feedback and have effectively gathered data to ensure the program is meeting the needs of the patients, the volunteers and the occupational therapy values. Daniela and Michelle have demonstrated compassion through their willingness and dedication to building the confidence and capacity of volunteers in running the leisure group. They supported the volunteers as they developed new skills through providing feedback, a nurturing attitude and a caring and genuine approach to supporting their development. Daniela and Michelle demonstrate respect throughout all of their interactions on the ward, whether that is with patients, staff or visitors. They both show excellent awareness and appreciation for the diversity of patients we have at Western Health and are dedicated to ensuring that the therapy they deliver is culturally appropriate and respectful of the wide diversity of patients we have. Daniela and Michelle also supported the volunteers running the group to consistently be inclusive of patients with all different presentations, impairments and backgrounds.


Resuscitation Coordinator, Centre for Education

Thea’s substantive role at Western Health is the Resuscitation Coordinator. She is focused on the best outcomes for patients and this drives every decision that she makes. Her standards are extremely high and she is all about the gold standard in both resuscitation training and emergency equipment procurement. In January 2019, Thea was required, at short notice, to take on a Joan Kirner project role. This project role included changing the emergency codes for deteriorating patients to align WH with other metro health services. This project required the training of many staff over a very short period of time. In the project role Thea is also responsible for purchasing emergency response equipment for the Joan Kirner precinct. Thea has extensively lobbied to incorporate a new deteriorating patient code to be included at Western Health, which is the Maternal Code Blue Code. When a pregnant patient has a code blue emergency there are two lives at risk and Thea wanted to ensure that both lives were given the best change for a good outcome. Thea, together with two of her colleagues, has trained more than 900 staff within a four week period. In addition, a poster and flashcard campaign has been designed and rolled out to further support the code change education. Delivering change is not always easy and this project has been no different. Many discussions have been had about code changes and her quiet gentle persuasion to ensure patients receive the best care, has won most of these debates. This is an enormous project that under different circumstances would have taken more than a year to design, collaborate and roll out. Thea’s work ethic enabled the achievement of these amazing results in a very short period of time. Her “can do” attitude and her tenacity to constantly advocate and achieve excellence for deteriorating patients will ensure that this project is delivered on time.