Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke has welcomed the news that an extra 65 newly graduated Registered Nurses (RNs) have this week commenced their careers in the Murrumbidgee Local Health District.

Ms Cooke said the graduates will make a huge difference to the region working at local hospitals including Coolamon, Cootamundra, Gundagai, Harden, Junee, Narrandera, Temora, West Wyalong and Young.

“These extra nurses will bolster our local health workforce, ensuring that residents of our towns and villages can live healthy, full lives,” Ms Cooke said. 

“Nearly all of the graduates have chosen to relocate from metro areas including Western Sydney, Newcastle and the Sutherland Shire, and it’s wonderful that these graduates have chosen to begin their careers in our small communities.”

Minister for Regional Health Bronnie Taylor said the influx to the local workforce follows an earlier recruitment boost in February, which saw 54 graduate nurses commence in roles across the District.

“A further 49 newly graduated Registered Nurses will also come on board in August, making 2022 the largest ever graduate intake for the District,” Mrs Taylor said.

“It is our workforce that makes the NSW public health system the envy of the world, and it is wonderful to see these newly graduated Registered Nurses choosing to begin their careers in rural and regional NSW.

“As someone who spent the best part of their nursing career at a regional hospital, I know the skills and experience these new nurses will gain will set them up for success into their future nursing career.”

District Director of Nursing and Midwifery Ms Christine Stephens said this year’s intake of graduate nurses is more than double compared with last year’s recruitment.

“We are pleased to provide additional employment opportunities to so many graduates and it’s been incredibly gratifying to see so many fresh faces joining the fold,” Ms Stephens said.

“We warmly welcome both local and metropolitan graduates to the District. For those relocating to MLHD they bring their families and friends to our wonderful regional communities and we are delighted to showcase what the district has to offer.

“Previous graduates have applauded the learning opportunities that regional facilities across Murrumbidgee Local Health District have offered, and the reward of working as a part of our local communities.”

Throughout their first year, graduates are provided with opportunities in a variety of clinical settings to ensure they gain a range of experience and consolidate skills and knowledge developed during their studies.

Graduate nurses will begin employment with MLHD in 2022 at the following local hospitals: Batlow, Boorowa, Corowa, Coolamon, Cootamundra, Culcairn, Deniliquin, Finley, Griffith, Gundagai, Harden, Henty, Holbrook, Junee, Leeton, Lockhart, Narrandera, Temora, Tumut, Tumbarumba, Wagga Wagga, West Wyalong and Young.