Ausmed believes it is essential that nurses living in the Cairns region have access to effective and engaging CPD on an annual basis. We look forward to receiving your support to ensure that this Local Nurses’ Conference is brought to Cairns every December.
Book your place at this year’s event and:
Gain new knowledge for contemporary practice
Network, share experiences, and connect with like-minded colleagues
Help meet your CPD requirements
Enrich your professional practice and personal growth
Improve health outcomes specific to your local community and much, much more…
We recognise that attending a conference requires planning and the support of your organisation. See below to find out how you can gain support to attend this event.
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Cairns Nurses' Conference!
8:30 Registration for Day One
Welcome and Introduction
Sue de Muelenaere
Essential Physical Assessment Skills
Nurses are essential in the early detection of clinical triggers that may suggest a patient is deteriorating or has already become acutely unwell. Appropriate and timely assessment is known to reduce morbidity and mortality, thus improving patient outcomes. This session reviews important assessment considerations, including:
Why do we assess our patients?
Vitally important “vital signs” – why some clinical cues are neglected
Top tips for quick recognition of acute deterioration
Review of key principles of assessment, including documentation and national standards
10:15 Morning Tea
Sue de Muelenaere
Asleep or Unconscious? Assessing Neurological Deterioration
The ability to recognise subtle changes in a person’s neurological state will enable you to detect signs of deterioration early. The purpose of this session is to take you through the basics of a neurological assessment, including a simplified approach to using the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS). Topics covered include:
What is a GCS include and what does this tell you?
What else other than a person’s GCS should be assessed, e.g. limb strength?
What are the common signs and symptoms associated with neurological decline and what may they indicate?
How do you document and report changes?
Sue de Muelenaere
Fluid and Electrolyte Balance
Failure to recognise and appropriately treat fluid and electrolyte imbalances can have fatal consequences. Knowledge and understanding of the normal physiological processes are essential for accurate patient assessment. This session will refresh your knowledge and assist you in getting up to speed with the different types of fluids and their uses. Topics include:
What are the normal physiological processes of fluid balance?
What is hypovolaemic shock? How would you recognise it and what might the causes be?
What intravenous fluids should be used and when?
How to recognise electrolyte disturbances early
12:30 Lunch and Networking
The Judicious Use of Opioids – Implications for Nursing Practice
Opioids are commonly prescribed medication for pain management in a range of settings, frequently as a PRN. Yet their potential for harm and misuse is ever-present. It is essential that these medicines are fully understood so that they are appropriately used and nurses can confidently feel safe administering them. This session offers an in-depth review of opioid medications and includes:
The different types of opioids used today
How opioids work to alleviate pain
Management of opioid-induced side effects, e.g. constipation, falls etc.
Dosing considerations in the elderly
Identifying tolerance, preventing dependency, and assessing for toxicity
Identifying drug diversion and other inappropriate behaviours
2:45 Afternoon Tea
When Less is More? Recognising the Unnecessary Use of Medicines
The adverse effects of medication are a constant concern for healthcare professionals. Knowing the potential risks of a medication can significantly prevent injury or harm, such as falls. This session will look at the adverse effects of medications, the need for deprescribing, and how to prevent unnecessary harm. It includes:
What are some of the common adverse effects of medicines?
How can you reduce the risk of harm associated with medicines?
Why is it important to be aware of adverse effects?
4:00 Close of Day One of Conference
9:00 Commencement of Day Two
Welcome Back and Review
Bringing Wounds to Light
Staying up-to-date with wound prevention and management to help reduce the impact of chronic wounds is constantly identified as a priority of care for older adults. This session will look at managing wounds by combining the latest standards with best practice. It includes:
What strategies can be used to prevent pressure injury?
How do you know it's a pressure injury?
Managing pressure injuries – what are the appropriate interventions? How can you select appropriate dressings?
Chronic wounds are often debilitating and can severely impact a person’s quality of life. Chronic wounds that linger can be challenging and frustrating, particularly for the person. This session will look at the evidence for managing a chronic wound when difficult healing circumstances exist. Topics include:
Which wounds are known to be chronic in nature?
What causes prolonged healing in a chronic wound?
How do you choose the most suitable dressing for a chronic wound?
Are there alternative ways to improve wound healing?
10:45 Morning Tea
The Mental Health Journey: Acute Episode to Diagnosis to, For Some, Long-Term Mental Illness
Mental illness can be complex and, at times, unpredictable. Its prevalence and level of severity depend on an individual’s past experiences, genetic makeup, access to treatment, and support and education. This session will look into acute and long-term mental illness and how they differ. Topics include:
How should we view recovery?
Why is “hope for recovery“ so important for every person living with a mental illness?
What is the difference between acute and long-term mental illness?
How prevalent is acute versus long-term mental illness?
More Than Just “Stressed” – Understanding Anxiety
Often, a degree of anxiety is beneficial to keep us safe and motivated. At one point or another most of us are likely to experience some level of anxiety. However, when consumed by it, it can quickly become debilitating and life-altering. This session will review these common mental health conditions. Topics include:
What is stress and how is it beneficial?
How does anxiety differ from stress?
Anxiety vs anxiety disorder – what are the key differences?
How can we manage stress and normal anxiety?
12:45 Lunch and Networking
Sue de Muelenaere
Recognising “Red Flags” of Clinical Deterioration
There is a huge potential for patients across any clinical setting to become rapidly unwell. Recent system changes have been rolled out to encourage better management of clinical deterioration. Your ability to recognise and respond to changes in a patient’s condition early is a high priority if an acute illness is to be averted. This session looks at:
What clues or changes in clinical observations may indicate a patient is becoming unwell?
What immediate assessment should be undertaken when you suspect a patient is deteriorating?
How should these changes in observations be documented?
When should you escalate incidents?
2:30 Afternoon Tea
Sue de Muelenaere
Shifting the pH – Acid-Base Balance
A deviation from acid-base balance homeostasis can severely affect any organ in the human body. In this interactive and practical session, you will develop a better understanding of this complex topic. It includes:
The importance and physiology of acid-base balance
Arterial blood gas analysis
Case studies for practice interpretation and management options
4:30 Close of Conference and Evaluations
Need for Program
Engaging in CPD is essential for all health professionals to maintain, improve, and broaden their knowledge, skills, and practice. CPD assists health professionals to stay up-to-date with changes in clinical practice and emerging new evidence in order to enhance their patient outcomes. It is also a professional registration requirement. There is a need for formal CPD to be provided directly to regional Australian nurses, midwives, and other health professionals who may not otherwise be able to access engaging and effective continuing education.
Purpose of Program
The purpose of Ausmed’s local nurses’ conferences is to provide health professionals who work in regional Australia with current knowledge about a range of professional and clinical practice topics that will improve the provision of holistic care.
Your learning outcomes:
People with health risks will receive preventative care and education to avoid illness
Better patient outcomes will be achieved through the application of up-to-date knowledge related to specific interventions
Interprofessional collaboration will be optimised to enhance patient outcomes
Patient outcomes will be underpinned by evidence-based practice, recognised standards, and guidelines