Transforming the future of nursing through education and technology

18 June 2020, 2PM (SGT) / 7AM (BST) / 4PM (AEST)

Key takeaways:

  1. Globally, more than 600 nurses have lost their lives due to the pandemic. Digital health is the opportunity to respond to the issues we are seeing. Concerns about privacy and security come forth but the benefits are much stronger.
  2. What we know is that pandemics are increasing in frequency. People may think that this is the last pandemic that they will be seeing in their lifetime, but this is not the case. We need to learn from the past to ensure that we are prepared for the next emergency.
  3. Surge in Telehealth outpatient appointments in Bendigo Health, Australia
    • In 2019, there were less than 200 telehealth visits and the total number of visits were close to 3,000 within 6 weeks in April and May 2020. This points to the infrastructure capability and flexibility in the healthcare staff to switch to a different mode of care.
    • Australia is examining if this approach is the way to go for the future, considering the large geographical area and patients needing to travel hours to see a doctor. They need to ensure that whatever they keep or not after the pandemic, is what works for the patients and staff.
  4. Nursing education moving forward
    • Australia – There are about 15,000 nurse practitioners. The key is to see if we are maximizing their potential and continue to push the boundaries in the models of care. We need to look at how we are investing in nurse practitioners and advanced care nurses, because they can help to bridge the gaps and ensure that everyone in the community have access to good care.
    • New Zealand – One of the gaps that they have identified is digital literacy across the healthcare sector. As we become a more digitized workforce, how do we start enabling our existing workforce to embrace new ways of working?

Kate Renzenbrink, CNMIO Bendigo Health
Karen Blake, Head of Clinical Informatics, healthAlliance

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Kate Renzenbrink
Chief Nursing and Midwifery Information Officer,  Bendigo Health
B Nurs B Health Informatics (Prof Hon) CHIA MACN
Grad Cert eHealth
Grad Dip Couns & Human Services

Kate is a registered nurse with extensive experience in acute care and aged care nursing including clinical education, general medicine, stroke, cardiothoracic, gynaecology and cancer nursing. As the Chief Nursing and Midwifery Information Officer at Bendigo Health, Kate ensures that Nurses and Midwives have digital health skills to meet the challenges of contemporary practice. She holds a Bachelor of Health Informatics (Professional Honours) and is a Certified Health Informatician, Australasia as well as a Clinical Reference Lead for the Australian Digital Health Agency. Kate is the Deputy Chair of the Australian College of Nursing CNIO Community of Interest and is a strong advocate for patient-centred care and consumer involvement in healthcare using health IT tools such as My Health Record.

Karen Blake
Head of Clinical Informatics, healthAlliance, Auckland, New Zealand
BMid PgCertHealMgt CPHL CertCplxMid CHIA RM

With more than 20 years in the health sector, Karen’s experience spans clinical practice in both Australia and New Zealand as well as time spent in management, education and senior policy roles. She now specialises in digital health at healthAlliance; working across the northern region of NZ and four District Health Boards providing clinical informatics leadership and expertise.

Karen is a founding member and Co-Chair of the Clinical Informatics Leadership Network, which provides a national multi-disciplinary and responsive network for clinicians in NZ working in digital health. Karen provides national expertise on health data through her involvement on the board of directors for HL7NZ and Health Informatics New Zealand, and sits on the Ministry of Health’s Health Information Standards Organisation, Digital Identity Advisory, and Sector Advisory Panel.

She is experienced in establishing health data governance, and the development of standards that enable interoperability. Karen is regularly called upon to put out fires. This isn’t a euphemism, she volunteers as an operational fire fighter with Fire and Emergency NZ,  maintaining her clinical practice as a first responder attending medical emergencies and MVAs, structural and vegetation fires.

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