Further arts installments for patient viewing


The second and third episodes of St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s art program for patient television will feature the life and work of photographer Frances Andrijich and sculptor Tony Jones, both celebrated Perth artists.

The episodes are part of Makers: the artists, their work, their lives, a series of 30-minute episodes that bring to life the artworks in the hospital’s art collection. You can also see these works in a fantastic exhibition in the Linking Corridor and reception area.

The West Australian-first dedicated arts television channel for patients was the brainchild of St John of God Health Care’s Art Curator Connie Petrillo.

“We are very excited to be able to share the significant work of these two artists throughout our hospitals,” says Connie.

“They will provide a wonderful insight and enjoyable viewing for our patients.”

The work of Frances Andrijich has graced magazines, books and newspapers around Australia and the world, including Time MagazineHarper’s BazaarFairfax Good Weekend MagazineAustralian GeographicVogueMarie Claire and Gourmet Traveller.

Amongst her many portraits, her image of an exuberant Heath Ledger is most well-known.

Frances says she is delighted to be involved in the project and looks forward to seeing patients’ reactions.

“To have artwork in such a celebrated collection, like St John of God Health Care, is an honour,” Ms Andrijich says.

“It is always fascinating for me to meet artists and to see them in their environment working…I am sure the patients will feel the same as Makers brings this experience to them.”

Tony Jones was named Western Australia’s Citizen of the Year in 2008. In 2009 he received an Order of Australia Medal for services to the visual arts as a sculptor and educator.

He continues a thriving practice in public art – after inspiring countless students over 50 years of teaching art. Often working collaboratively with other artists, many of his artworks have made their way into the public psyche, such as the regularly, and anonymously, dressed Eliza on the Swan River.

The first episode of the Makers celebrated the work of local painter, sculptor, draughtsman and printmaker Hans Arkeveld and was met with great interest by patients at the hospital. The episode gave viewers a glimpse into his fascinating studio at the University of Western Australia and the unique home he built in the Perth Hills. He talks about his work in the collection, emigrating from Holland as a child, and his father being forced to work for the Gestapo.

Makers is created by the Artist’s Chronicle and commissioned by St John of God Health Care, and on display at Murdoch Hospital.

Preventing hair loss possible for chemotherapy patients

The Cancer Centre at St John of God Murdoch Hospital has purchased a scalp cooling system, DigniCap®, to help prevent hair loss for patients while they are undergoing certain chemotherapy.

Oncologist Daphne Tsoi says individuals are different in terms of how they feel about losing their hair through chemotherapy.

“Some of our patients don’t mind too much and some find it very traumatic. By having this equipment at the Cancer Centre, we can add another layer of comfort for our patients who are already experiencing a difficult time, without the added stress of losing their hair.”

Some chemotherapy drugs can damage your hair cells. By wearing the DigniCap® 30 minutes before, during and for a set period after treatment, the cells are protected and thus aids in the prevention of chemotherapy induced hair loss.

Patient Gail Chambers used the DigniCap® for her chemotherapy sessions at the hospital and said that losing her hair was one of the things she worried about most.

“Losing your hair from chemotherapy is a real reminder of your illness when you look in the mirror so it was a huge comfort to me to not have to deal with this side effect. My hair thinned slightly but that was it, so I was really delighted to have had the opportunity to use the machine,” Ms Chambers said.

The DigniCap® technology was generously funded through the St John of God Foundation by the Somas family and Audio Hub Subiaco.

The Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer, Nick Harvey says “Our patients deserve only the best; we are delighted to have been able to contribute to Gail’s experience thanks to the generosity of our donors.”


Study examines FIFO mums’ needs

Researchers at the St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Research have embarked on a study to discover if new mothers who are fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) workers or whose partners are FIFO workers, have the same needs as those who are not FIFO workers.

The study will involve focus groups and surveys with new mothers who have recently delivered their babies at St John of God Murdoch, Subiaco and Bunbury hospitals so that both regional and metropolitan perspectives are recorded.

Previous research indicated that about 15.5% of maternity patients at St John of God Murdoch Hospital identified as having a FIFO partner (Reilly et al., 2015).

Dr Gail Ross-Adjie says the results from the study will inform how we deliver care to these new mothers in the ante-natal and early post-partum periods.

“We want to ensure we have everything in place to help these new mothers who might have not have all the support they need at home,” Dr Ross-Adjie says.

“Gaining their feedback will give us insight into exactly how we can better meet their needs.”

Weekly recycling initiative provides benefits for many

Stomal Therapy Nurse Kate Brereton, Warehouse Manager Gary Baxter and WA Ostomy Association volunteer Phillip Gregory.

The team at St John of God Murdoch Hospital has joined forces with the WA Ostomy Association in Mt Lawley to use the hospital’s recyclable materials to help transport medical devices used for stomas.

After volunteering at the Association, Stomal Therapy Nurse Kate Brereton realised instead of disposing of its plastics, including bubble wrap and plastic pouches, the hospital could give them to the Association.

“I contacted our warehouse manager who was more than happy to assist so we got the ball rolling and started a weekly donation,” Ms Brereton said.

“The Association do such amazing work in our community supporting those who live with stomas, that being able to help them, and be environmentally friendly, is a wonderful thing.”

The WA Ostomy Association is a voluntary, non-profit organisation that helps over 3000 West Australian people who live with a stoma. A stoma is an artificial opening on the abdomen wall used to collect waste after some surgeries for bowel or bladder cancers or inflammatory bowel diseases.

Phillip Gregory, volunteer at the Association, said it was often a challenge to find suitable packing materials that were both hygienic and effective for transport.

“We mail out approximately 400 parcels to our members each week,” Mr Gregory said.

“We had been using newspaper, which isn’t always in easy supply and not as hygienic as the bubble wrap and plastic pillows which we now have in plentiful supply.”

In combination with two other recycling initiatives, the weekly donation has had a significant impact on reducing the amount of landfill the St John of God Health Care warehouse produces. Only four or five months ago, the warehouse was sending three skip bins to landfill per week and now, it only sends one per week.

Videos to support patients through cancer treatment

Researchers at St John of God Murdoch Hospital are creating a series of informative videos to help cancer patients live well during and after treatment.

Professor Leanne Monterosso says the videos will be developed from feedback from interviews and study groups in which patients were asked about their experiences of having treatment and recovering from cancer.

“Our aim is to use this information to help us provide more support and information to improve the health and wellbeing of our patients,” Professor Monterosso says.

“It’s very helpful to be forearmed with useful information to make the journey a little easier.”

The first video in the series introduces patients to the hospital and Cancer Centre facilities and what they can expect when they arrive for treatment.

The video also outlines the treatment process, possible side effects and how to live healthily. The next four videos in the series will provide further information about diet and exercise and physiotherapy.

“Through extensive research studies conducted globally, we know that if you adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle during and after your treatment and take control of these areas of your life, your recovery and outcomes are far better,” Professor Monterosso says.

To reflect patients different needs at different stages of diagnosis, patients were interviewed at four points: at diagnosis, at three and six months after diagnosis and at the end of their treatment.

Patients will be able to access the videos online or watch them while they are undergoing treatment in the hospital’s Cancer Centre.

The project is funded by the University of Notre Dame, Fremantle’s Collaborative Research Networks Program and the St John of God Foundation.

St John of God Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer, Nick Harvey says “the health and wellbeing of the community is our primary focus and we are proud to support this valuable initiative.”

10,000 babies and still counting…

kendall-van-den-berghSt John of God Health Care is celebrating 10,000 babies born year-to-date at its hospitals across Australia this week, with an average of 36 babies born every day.

To mark the occasion, all families of babies born at St John of God Murdoch Hospital on Tuesday October 11, 2016 were presented with newborn gifts in recognition of the milestone.

Manager of the maternity ward Sue Bradshaw said it was a busy day for their ward.

“We had 13 babies arrive today, including a set of twins,” Ms Bradshaw said.

“All the mums were delighted to be a part of the celebrations and to receive their lovely baby hampers.”

St John of God Health Care operates 11 maternity wards across the country and expects to deliver more than 13,000 babies at its hospitals by the end of the calendar year – a 19% increase on 2015.

At Murdoch Hospital, 2485 babies were born last year.

In the 10,000 babies tally, there have been more baby boys born than girls, 51.5% versus 48.5%.  The most popular name for newborn boys is Oliver and for girls it’s Charlotte.

St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s maternity ward is delivering expertise in maternity services and has an ongoing commitment to the best care for babies and families. It has an outstanding reputation as one of the finest maternity facilities in the southern metropolitan area and caters for a full range of birthing needs.

New medical clinic opens in Mandurah

mur4554-peel-concept-development-650x285St St John of God Murdoch Hospital is very pleased to open new consulting suites to offer medical services to the Peel community.

Chief Executive Officer John Fogarty says the St John of God Mandurah Consulting Suites will enable the hospital to offer local access to a variety of medical specialists for the Peel community.

“Last year, almost 5000 Peel residents came to St John of God Murdoch Hospital for treatment and we look forward to offering excellent quality healthcare to more residents of this rapidly growing region,” Mr Fogarty says.

“Our new suites will provide patients with access to a greater range of specialists and more convenient access to our health campus located in Murdoch’s Health and Knowledge Precinct.”

Consultations with specialists will be available in the areas of urology, orthopaedics, ENT, neurosurgery, general surgery, gastroenterology, ophthalmology and upper gastrointestinal issues and procedures. Home Nursing Services, provided by St John of God Health Choices, and Mental Health Counselling, provided by St John of God Murdoch Community Mental Health, will also be available at the suites.

For more information about the St John of God Mandurah Consulting Suites, please visit sjog.org.au/murdoch/Mandurah


Less pain for patients makes great story

Some of the emergency department team at St John of God Murdoch Hospital.

Some of the emergency department team at St John of God Murdoch Hospital.

Global health organisation surveyors Press Ganey have selected St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s Emergency Department as a finalist in its 2016 Success Story Awards for the department’s improvements in managing patient’s pain.

Director of Emergency Medicine Paul Bailey said pain is the major reason for patients coming to the ED and so pain management (analgesia) is a key issue for emergency departments both in Australia and globally.

“However, emergency doctors might be more conservative in their approach with pain management, partly given the nature of emergency departments, but also due to the many negative side effects of strong pain killers,” Dr Bailey said.

Despite being voted by patients as the top private emergency department in Australia for three consecutive years, Murdoch Private Emergency’s patients’ satisfaction with how their pain was managed was low, so the staff decided to make some changes under the banner of “Your pain – Our priority”.

The challenge was to alter the ED culture around pain management and involve as many treating staff as possible in the improvement of current practices.
“Early assessment of pain and provision of timely and appropriate analgesia is fundamental in the delivery of quality patient care,” Dr Bailey said.

A pain management team of medical and nursing representatives was established to develop a strategy for improving pain management. From these discussions, a nurse directed analgesia protocol was developed, where under the supervision of medical officers, nurses are able to administer analgesics to appropriate patients and assess patients pain using a verbal numeric rating scale from 0 -10.

Clinical Nurse Brontie Hicks said the protocols were launched with staff education and engagement, and evaluated three and 12 months after implementation.

“We found patients responded well to the pain scale and nurses were happy to be involved in decision making, which in turn improved patient outcomes and satisfaction,” Ms Hicks said.

Ms Hicks will travel to Sydney in August to represent the department and share how the department achieved such a great outcome.

“Hopefully listening to how we dealt with changing pain management practices will provide others with a clear vision of how to achieve their goals and implement a successful pain protocol.”

For more information about St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s Emergency Department, please visit sjog.org.au/murdoch/emergency

Research leads to better patient care

Professor Leanne Monterosso, Dr Gail Ross-Adjie and Alexis Cranfield.

Professor Leanne Monterosso, Dr Gail Ross-Adjie and Alexis Cranfield.

Patient-focused research was celebrated for its contribution to ensuring high standards of safety and quality in health care at a research symposium in June.

At the symposium, St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Research and the University of Notre Dame Australia, Fremantle, launched an inaugural research report that documents their collaborative research undertaken from 2011 to 2015.

Research completed to date included understanding the perceptions and needs of caregivers regarding palliative care provision which has since been replicated in the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital’s emergency department and with paramedics in the St John Ambulance Service.

The Centre has also researched the incidence, risk factors and healthcare cost of falls after major joint replacement surgery and been involved in a collaborative study on women’s wellness after cancer care.

Professor Leanne Monterosso, the Chair of Nursing Research, said St John of God Murdoch Hospital’s partnership with the University of Notre Dame has enabled the Centre to promote evidence-based and leading edge clinical practice.

“The primary aim of our research is to continuously improve the quality and safety of care we provide our patients, as well as contribute the body of research that exists in health care globally,” Professor Monterosso said.

“We have also been investigating the hospital’s workforce and how employee engagement and intergenerational tension in the nursing workforce play a part in delivering excellent care.”

“We are very proud of our achievements over the past five years, and thankful to Notre Dame for their ongoing support.”

Professor Elaine Pavlos, Dean of the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Notre Dame, welcomed the launch of the research report and praised the ongoing collaboration between the two institutions.

“The University of Notre Dame Australia is committed to the Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Research and the existing collaboration we share with St John of God,” Professor Pavlos said.

“This Centre is the only one of its kind in the private health care sector in Western Australia of which the University is proud to be associated.”

Prospective new studies for 2016 at the Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Research include survivorship after cancer care and the identification of patients with palliative care needs in the hospital’s emergency department.


Ferns Counselling Centre new location blessed and celebrated

The new location of Ferns Counselling Centre, operated by St John of God Murdoch Hospital, was blessed and celebrated at an evening event in early May.

Guests included the Honorable Andrea Mitchell MLA, Minister for Mental Health and Child Protection, Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt, the Reverend Sealin Garlett, representatives from mental health services in Perth and Fremantle and caregivers from the Centre, Raphael Services and St John of God Murdoch Hospital.

The Centre provides short term counselling, psycho-education and psychological therapies for people 16 and over with common mental ill health such as depression, anxiety, trauma and grief. The services are bulk billed or at minimal cost.

The Centre strives to have a no wrong door policy, so if they can’t help, they will look for a service that can.

For more information or to reach any of the St John of God Murdoch Social Outreach Services please contact:
Address: 160 High Street, Fremantle 6160
Tel: (08) 6226 9400
Fax: (08) 6226 9488
Email: counselling@sjog.org.au
Web: www.sjog.org.au/Murdoch