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Support for staff with COVID concerns

In a bid to ensure Nhulundu Health Service staff and the wider community are adequately supported throughout COVID, a COVID Lead Project has recently been launched. Funded under the Queensland Government’s COVID-19 Immediate Support Measures, the new role is being facilitated by Shelley Lawton.

Previously based on the Sunshine Coast, Shelley is well equipped to implement the COVID Lead Project. Bringing over 20 years’ experience in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs, including health, childcare, education and child protection, Shelley said her objective was to assess how Nhulundu Health Service staff, as well as the wider community, were coping with the changes wrought by the virus. “My role is to support and lead the organisation’s response to COVID and recovery,” she said.

Embracing this newly created role, Shelley is currently working on an action plan that she expects will deliver positive results. “At this stage my primary focus is on staff – engaging one-on-one with them, building relationships, checking that they are asking for and receiving professional aid if required,” she said.

Looking into the possibility of holding a ‘Rapid Recharge Day’ – one for staff and one for the community – Shelley said ideally they would coincide with Mental Health Week in October.

Nhulundu Health Service CEO, Matthew Cooke, welcomed Ms Lawton’s appointment. “I look forward to drawing on her skills and expertise to lead and share both a workforce and community response to COVID-19,” he said.