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5 Ways the Foundation Enhances Safety & Health at POWH

On World Safety and Health at Work Day, we commemorate the dedication and wellbeing of Prince of Wales Hospital staff by highlighting five impactful initiatives supported by the Foundation.


#1 The implementation of the Automatic Dispensing Cabinets hospital wide

The implementation of Automatic Dispensing Cabinets (ADCs) at Prince of Wales Hospital marks a significant milestone in the ongoing effort to enhance medication management practices. Hospital staff have been proactive in recent years, striving to streamline the medication administration process and empower staff with efficient and secure drug dispensing capabilities. Previously, the manual process of accessing medications led to potential errors and inefficiencies, compounded by challenges such as stock discrepancies and limited visibility into inventory levels.

With the introduction of ADCs, these challenges have been effectively addressed. The electronic system enables safe and timely medication administration, reducing the risk of errors and ensuring patient safety. Furthermore, the automated system facilitates seamless communication across hospital wards, promoting efficiency and coordination in medication delivery.

The positive impact of ADCs on hospital staff is evident, with improved workflow and enhanced patient care outcomes. For instance, staff can now easily access medications, track inventory levels, and administer drugs with precision, leading to a significant reduction in errors and delays.


#2 Supporting Registrars in the Psychiatry Unit

The Foundation has been instrumental in bolstering the safety and wellbeing of staff at Prince of Wales Hospital, with a particular focus on supporting psychiatry registrars. These dedicated professionals devote their careers to assisting individuals grappling with complex mental health issues, yet their noble efforts expose them to significant emotional and psychological strains.

Despite the absence of a dedicated wellbeing program tailored for psychiatry registrars and a communal space at the hospital for peer support, the Foundation has championed a proactive initiative. This initiative involves a proposed grant application aimed at establishing a wellbeing program specifically designed for psychiatry registrars. The program comprises three engaging events aimed at alleviating stress, boosting morale, and fostering peer connections. By prioritising the mental health of registrars, this program seeks to mitigate the risks of burnout and compassion fatigue inherent in psychiatric training. Moreover, by nurturing a resilient and supported workforce, the hospital is better positioned to deliver superior, compassionate patient-centred care.

In essence, the Foundation’s investment in events enhancing registrar wellbeing not only benefits the registrars themselves but also contributes to the overall health and efficacy of the hospital system.


#3 COURAGE program for the wellbeing of nursing staff

Karen Tuqiri, Director of Nursing, spearheaded the initiative by applying for this program through our Foundation’s grant rounds. Sarah Morse made a notable impression as a keynote speaker on “Cultivating a Culture of COURAGE” during the POWH International Nurses Day event in May 2023. As both a Registered Nurse and Professional Speaker, Sarah is adept at engaging with the workforce. Her material on the Culture of COURAGE serves as a source of inspiration for healthcare professionals, urging them to tackle burnout and explore ways to become part of the solution.

COURAGE, an acronym for Connection, Outward Focus, Unity, Resilience, Authenticity, Gratitude, and Empathy, forms the basis of Sarah’s message, encouraging her audience to collaborate in fostering a workplace culture conducive to flourishing. She is scheduled to conduct three interactive leadership workshops, aimed at health and administration leaders.

Additionally, a series of twenty 45-minute in-services will be offered, inviting all streams of health professionals to participate. Throughout these sessions, employees will be encouraged to complete brief workplace satisfaction surveys, providing them with an opportunity to contribute to the cultivation of a culture of COURAGE at POWH.


#4 The wellbeing of the Allied Health Team

Allied Health departments operate across various settings and clinical areas, necessitating specific events to acknowledge and recognise the invaluable work performed by staff. Organising events such as quarterly Allied Health forums and Allied Health Professions Day is crucial for fostering networking, recognition, and wellbeing among the more than 350 Allied Health Professional staff at POWH. A total of 8 events are planned to cater to the diverse needs of these professionals. The proposed initiative by Daniel Treacy through POWHF funding will provide vital support for these initiatives.


#5 Upskilling nurses to increase their patient-care knowledge for patients with suicidal ideation

Wayne Varndell’s pursuit of the POWHF Research Medal provides a unique opportunity to advance emergency nursing practices and patient outcomes at POWH. The findings from his study will play a pivotal role in shaping local debates, informing service design, clinician education, and the development of the Mental Health Companion role within the POWH Emergency Department (ED). This project is intricately aligned with the Ministry of Health’s Towards Zero Suicides initiative, aiming to evaluate the Mental Health Companion role and training program for potential broader implementation across POWH and SESLHD.

As part of Phase 2 of the Suicidal Behaviour and Self-Harm in Emergency Department Attenders study, the Research Medal has enabled the funding of a 6-month trial for the Mental Health Companion role in the ED. This role is designed to deliver person-centred care, ensuring the safety and support of patients experiencing mental ill-health and their carers within the ED environment. By addressing the root causes of mental ill-health and providing valuable training to staff, including those at entry points in their healthcare careers, the Mental Health Companion role aims to improve the overall ED environment for both staff and patients.

Moreover, the introduction of this new position is anticipated to set a cultural example within the ED, fostering a positive impact on all staff and raising the standard of practice at Prince of Wales Hospital. Wayne Varndell’s dedication to expanding his skills as an emergency nurse academician and researcher not only contributes to ongoing innovation in emergency care but also integrates community-driven solutions into the delivery of emergency services, ultimately enhancing the safety and wellbeing of both patients and staff at POWH.


Support the Foundation in funding further and new safety and wellbeing initiatives throughout the hospital by donating on our website. Your gift helps us continue our work as the funding heartbeat of Prince of Wales Hospital.