Staff profiles

Victoria Hill and Dan Hurley

Emergency Department Clinical Nurse Specialists

New clinical nurse specialists boost efficiency and service at Taranaki Base Hospital’s Emergency Department

We give a big virtual applause and congratulations to Victoria Hill and Dan Hurley who recently qualified as Emergency Department clinical nurse specialists.

The two were just six weeks into the post-graduate 16-week course through Auckland University when COVID-19 kicked in.
 “It was challenging, like it was for everybody,” Victoria says. The fortnightly trips to Auckland changed to learning via correspondence and finding the required 100 clinical hours was tricky in a quiet ED through a month of lockdown.

“It was a lot of learning in a short space of time.”

But now Victoria and Dan can cover the two ED clinical nurse specialists (CNS) rostered every day 9.30am – 6pm and help ED run smoothly when urgent cases require the team’s full attention.  

At Taranaki Base Hospital’s ED, clinical nurse specialists work with the nurse practitioner and consult with doctors, focusing on advanced assessment, treatment and discharge of minor cases.

As always, it’s a collaborative approach, and a system that Dan has worked previously in the United States.

This relatively new model of care in New Zealand has split streams of patient care through ED front doors making more efficient use of resources and ultimately reducing strain on the department.

Victoria and Dan were encouraged to upskill by nurse practitioner Deb Greenhead, as part of the plans to grow the service for this model.

The clinical nurse specialist and nurse practitioner roles blend the nursing model with the medical model to deliver a holistic approach to patient assessment, treatment and management to improve patient experience and satisfaction.


Last updated: Thursday, October 1, 2020

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