For Launceston nurse Emily Fisher, the decision to study nursing was an easy one.
“This is incredibly cliche, but I wanted to become a nurse because I genuinely wanted to help people,” she said.
“I wanted to make a difference in society.”
Ms Fisher recently graduated with a nursing degree from the University of Tasmania, and is in the middle of a 12-month placement at the Launceston General Hospital through the Transition to Practice program.
The Transition to Practice program provides extra support to newly qualified nurses to aid their transition into the workforce, through education and mentorship from more experienced staff.
The program has been expanded by 30 places, Health Minister Michael Ferguson announced on Sunday.
The boost will cost $10.3 million over four years, and will introduce 180 Transition to Practice placements into Tasmanian hospitals over six years.
Applications for the next intake are open until September 23, and any nurse with six months or less experience in the health system is eligible to apply.
Mr Ferguson said it was part of the state government’s $757 million upgrade in health funding over the next six years.
“The government has now opened 120 extra beds, we’ve opened all of the wards that were previously closed, and we’ve been successful because today we have 370 more nurses than when we came to office,” he said.
Ms Fisher said she would recommend any nurse to apply for the program.
“It’s been a really great experience for me coming into the Transition to Practice program, knowing that I have additional support available when I need,” she said.
“We have additional education services every second Friday, and we also get given education days that will take up a full day as well, so it’s been really great for me.
“It is incredibly valuable because it does give us additional opportunities that we may not have received if we didn’t go through the program.”
IN OTHER NEWS: September 18: The Examiner subscription package