Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke today welcomed a new nurse to West Wyalong Hospital, where Aylsa Murray is taking her first steps into a new career.

Ms Cooke met Ms Murray and discussed her home town of Adelong, along with her expectations and hopes for her new career.

Ms Murray is one of 10 new nursing and midwifery graduates joining the Cootamundra electorate’s health services, launching their careers at local hospitals and health services.

“Nursing and midwifery graduates are an integral part of our workforce and will go on to make a huge difference in the lives of local patients and their families,” Ms Cooke said.

“A career in nursing and midwifery provides a range of opportunities. They will be working in a range of clinical settings including surgical and medical specialties, paediatrics, community, mental health and maternity.”

Across the electorate, Cowra, Grenfell, Young, Harden, Temora and West Wyalong all received one graduate, with two graduates beginning at both Cootamundra and Junee’s Hospitals.

The NSW Government’s commitment to increase the number of nurses and midwives in our hospitals has been increasing since 2011.

Over a quarter of the 2019 graduate nurses and midwives will start their careers in rural and regional locations across NSW.

Ms Cooke said nurses and midwives are the backbone of the State’s public health system and welcomed the record number of graduates.

“Around the clock, 365 days a year our nurses and midwives are on the frontline of the NSW health system providing care to patients,” Ms Cooke

“The commitment and compassion of our nurses and midwives, combined with their outstanding clinical skills, significantly contribute to the health and wellbeing of the people of NSW.

“I can’t thank our new graduates enough for choosing a career in caring for the sick and vulnerable in our community.”

The 2018/19 State Budget has added 1,370 health staff, including 300 medical practitioners, 950 nurses and midwives and 120 allied health professionals – resulting in a record frontline clinical and clinical support staff of over 105,000 people.