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Nursing students linked nationwide.



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Joint Media Release

The Hon Julie Bishop MP Minister for Ageing

Senator Richard Colbeck Senator for Tasmania

18 May 2004 JB075/04

Nursing students linked nationwide

Aged care nurses who receive Australian Government scholarships will soon be linked across the nation with the launch of an on-line discussion forum today by the Minister for Ageing, Julie Bishop, and Liberal Senator for Tasmania Senator Richard Colbeck.

Ms Bishop and Senator Colbeck were joined by the Liberal Candidate for Braddon, Mark Baker, at the launch, which took place at Karingal Home for the Aged in Devonport.

Ms Bishop said the new forum would enable the eligible aged care nursing scholarship recipients to share their experiences and knowledge on-line with other students.

“No matter whether students are here in Devonport, or in Longreach, or in Albany, they will be able to discuss issues relating to their studies and receive input from guest presenters from around the world.

The forum will enable communication, support and information sharing between scholarship holders, mentors, industry contacts and invited guests, regardless of geographic location.

The on-line forum is part of a Scholarship Support System Project conducted by the Royal College of Nursing Australia on behalf of the Australian Government.

Other components of the Scholarship Support System Project, valued at more than $750,000, include:

● a dedicated web site for the support program;

● e-bulletins;

● a literature database;

● academic skills resources; and

● a mentor scheme.

Senator Colbeck said 37 Tasmanians had taken up the Australian Government aged care nursing scholarships for undergraduate and postgraduate study.

“I am delighted aged care nursing scholarship recipients in Tasmania will be able to benefit from

increased interaction with other students throughout Australia,” Senator Colbeck said.

“Local aged care nurses have great experience and skills to offer their interstate counterparts, as well as receiving support and encouragement from aged care nursing students in other parts of the country.”

The Australian Government has already offered 900 aged care nursing scholarships and is calling for applicants for 300 undergraduate scholarships and more than 100 Continuing Professional Development scholarships for 2005.

As part of the 2004-05 Budget the Australian Government also announced up to1600 new aged care nursing places in universities, and training for more than 5000 Enrolled Nurses working in aged care to obtain medication management qualifications as part of $101.4 million aged care workforce package.

Copies of the e-bulletin will also be available to the public through the Royal College of Nursing Australia’s web-site: www.rcna.org.au

Media contacts: Rachael Thompson (Ms Bishop) 0417 265 289 Patrick Clancy (Senator Colbeck) 03 6424 5960