Chance to salute two special roles

Cecilia AllenSound Telegraph
Rockingham General Hospital clinical nurse Dianne Skrzypczak.
Camera IconRockingham General Hospital clinical nurse Dianne Skrzypczak.

Nurses all over the world and from different walks of life will be recognised during International Nurses Day on May 12 to mark the contributions nurses make to society.

May is a special time of the year for the nursing fraternity, with May 5 also the International Day of the Midwife.

These internationally celebrated days are an opportunity for health services and professionals to celebrate and recognise the significant role that nurses and midwives play in the delivery of patient care across all health sectors.

Rockingham General Hospital employs more than 760 nurses, all of whom are a vital part of the healthcare profession.

Get in front of tomorrow's news for FREE

Journalism for the curious Australian across politics, business, culture and opinion.


Last financial year, 1739 babies were born at Rockingham General Hospital and from January to March there have been 428 births.

Acting director of nursing and midwifery Heather Pearce said midwives and nurses were innovators, collaborators, teachers and advocates.

“Nursing and midwifery involve the ability to perform more than just practical tasks,” she said.

“Nurses and midwives combine the art of caring, scientific knowledge and skills developed through education. Nurses are the ultimate patient advocate.”

Acting director of nursing and midwifery Heather Pearce.
Camera IconActing director of nursing and midwifery Heather Pearce. Credit: Cecilia Allen.

Ms Pearce’s nursing career has spanned more than 30 years and she has been at Rockingham General Hospital since 1988.

She has worked all through the hospital as nurse and midwife, working her way up to the position of the surgery and specialist care nursing co-director.

“There are great career opportunities, even in smaller hospitals,” she said.

The role of a nurse is varied, somewhere in the hospital a midwife is delivering a baby and in another part of the hospital, a nurse is caring for dying patient.

Clinical nurse Dianne Skrzypczak has been a nurse for more than 12 years, she has worked throughout the hospital but spends most of her time in the Aged Care and Rehabilitation Unit.

As a clinical nurse, Mrs Skrzypczak is a registered nurse who is recognised as a senior member of staff and is responsible for the day-to-day ward operations, training nursing students and liaising with doctors regarding the health and care of patients.

“I love being a nurse, it’s rewarding and satisfying,” she said.

For Mrs Skrzypczak, providing patients with palliative care is particularly rewarding.

“I love being there for patients towards the end of their life and also supporting the families,” she said. “I feel privileged to learn about them and the lives they have had. Everyone has a story.”

Ms Pearce said nursing could take you down many different paths and all over the world.

“You meet a lot of people along the journey who you can have an impact on,” she said.

“As a nurse, you can make a difference at the best and worst times of someone’s life. Nurses and midwives are proud to stand up and say I’m a nurse and I am a midwife.”

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails