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USC a national finalist in nursing awards

An innovative health project led by the University of the Sunshine Coast is one of three national finalists in its category of the 2015 HESTA Australian Nursing Awards.

The project has developed a new model of care for the elderly and involves a USC team, led by Professor of Nursing Marianne Wallis, working with Nambour General Hospital’s emergency department and Sundale’s Nambour Residential Care Centre.

Professor Wallis, who heads a USC Nursing and Midwifery Cluster for Research Excellence called NURTURE, will be among the finalists at the awards in Brisbane on Thursday 15 October.

The project, called CEDRiC (Care coordination through Emergency Department, Residential aged care and primary health Collaboration), is a finalist in the Team Innovation category for working to deliver high quality aged care and reduce hospital visits for the elderly.

“This is wonderful recognition for a program that is changing the care of nursing home residents who are at risk of developing acute illnesses,” said Professor Wallis.

“Through capacity-building and better interaction between sectors, it aims to keep aged care residents out of hospital, improve resident and family satisfaction with care and reduce the time older patients spend waiting on hospital trolleys in emergency departments.”

The project in May won a $1.15 million grant from the Australian Government’s Department of Social Services.

The Team Innovation category winner will receive a $10,000 development grant.

In May last year, USC Professor of Nursing Jeanine Young led another collaborative program that won the same category of the HESTA awards in Sydney. It involved the distribution of safe sleep ‘Pepi-pods’ to Cape York communities to reduce infant mortality rates.

— Julie Schomberg

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