Wednesday, 27 November 2019

A landmark new training and skills program is now open to non-clinical workers in Victorian health services, helping them to grow long and exciting careers in the health sector.

Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing today urged health service workers to apply for 100 scholarships now available through the two-year $1.25 million Health Services Workers Training Fund.

The scholarships are open to hospital cooks, cleaners, orderlies, security guards and other administrative and support staff who are seeking to develop or learn new skills.

We know these non-clinical health service workers help make our hospitals tick, giving our dedicated doctors, nurses and midwives the support they need to keep saving lives.

These scholarships will open the door to new career opportunities for these critical health service workers, making courses more affordable while also strengthening and improving retention in Victoria’s health workforce.

The $10,000 scholarships will apply to training courses such as certificate studies in Health Services Assistance, Health Support Services, Non-Emergency Patient Transport, Health Administration, Health Care and in Hospital Security. The Health Services Workers Training Fund includes capped funding at 25% of the total scholarship to supplement employee wages while undertaking this training.

A Working Group with representatives from the Health Workers Union, TAFE providers and health services will provide advice on the final allocation of scholarships.

In the Victorian Budget 2019/20, the Victorian Government is investing $117.8 million to recruit and train more nurses, midwives and frontline health workers, and make further improvement to Nurse and Midwife to Patient ratios that will see 1,100 extra nurses and midwives in Victorian public hospitals.

The Victorian Government is delivering on their commitment to create a Nursing and Midwifery Workforce Development Fund, which will expand the existing Registered Nurse and Midwife Graduate Program and establish a graduate program for Enrolled Nurses for the first time.

This will employ 400 newly graduated Enrolled Nurses over the next four years, meaning Victorians will be able to study a Diploma of Nursing at TAFE – one of the Labor Government’s free priority TAFE courses – then start work as an Enrolled Nurse once they graduate.

The Fund will also provide up to 400 postgraduate scholarships for current nurses and midwives to upgrade their skills, 400 places in programs such as the Postgraduate Midwifery Employment Program, as well as refresher programs for up to 800 nurses and midwives currently registered and not practising, so they can re-enter the workforce or reskill in a speciality area of practice.

The scholarship guidelines and application form 2019/20 for the Health Services Workers Training Fund have been sent to all Victorian health services with applications closing on 20 December 2019.

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

 “These scholarships provide a great opportunity to strengthen the skills of our health service workers, which will mean even better care for patients in Eastern Victoria.”

“We want our health service workers to feel supported and armed with the right training to have fulfilling careers. I encourage all non-clinical health service workers to apply!”