11h 30m CPDConference

Ballarat Nurses' Conference

Two Days - Learn Locally with Ausmed


Golden Point
10 - 11 Sep 2020
Mercure Ballarat Hotel & Convention Centre,
613 Main Road

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Book Online Now  

Why Attend

This general nurses’ conference is an ideal way for you to update your knowledge about a range of nursing topics each year. Book your place at this upcoming conference and:

  • Keep up-to-date
  • 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…
Attending a conference requires planning and, often, the support of your organisation. See below and find out how you can gain support to attend this event.

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Day One

8:30 Registration for Day One


Welcome and Introduction

Geoff Ahern

Grey Rainbow: LGBTQIA Mental Health

In Australia, people who identify as LGBTQIA have the highest suicide rate of any group, but this rate could be even higher due to underreporting. This session discusses the mental health of those who identify as LGBTQIA and includes:

  • Why are LGBTQIA communities at such a high risk for suicide?
  • What are the ways we could better support our patients who identify as LGBTQIA in accessing mental health services?
10:00 Morning Tea

Geoff Ahern

Mental Health, Media and Stigma!

Mental illness can be complex and, at times, unpredictable. With a public hungry for more information, how do we look behind the numbers and examine the real effects of mental health on the individual? Topics include:

  • Why so much stigma, shame and embarrassment around mental illness v physical illness?
  • Does the way we present mental health to the media give a realistic picture?
  • What happens when mental health goes beyond the professional and enters our personal life?
Geoff Ahern

A Practical Guide to Performing a Mental Health Examination

It is essential that all nurses, not just those working in mental health settings, have the knowledge, skills and confidence to perform a mental health examination. This practical session will draw on relevant case studies to demonstrate how to assess a person who has a mental illness and may be experiencing mental distress. It includes:

  • What are the basic principles of a mental health examination?
  • When would you need to conduct one?
  • When should you escalate or refer to specialist mental health services?
  • A brief discussion of your coping skills in challenging situations
12:30 Lunch and Networking

Bobby Mehta

Curcumin and Its Effects on Health

Curcumin, one of the key active ingredients of turmeric, is currently the subject of significant research. This session will look at:

  • What are the potential health benefits of this ingredient?
  • What is current research and evidence saying?
  • Is there a possible future role for curcumin in human health?
2:45 Afternoon Tea

Bobby Mehta

Prebiotics and Probiotics: Taking a Deeper Look

The formation, development and role of the human microbiome have been well established. This session will take learners on a deeper journey into the world of pre and probiotics and includes:

  • Exploring individual strains and the evidence for their use
  • Reviewing some of the latest research into this fascinating area
4:00 Close of Day One of Conference

Day Two

9:00 Commencement of Day Two


Welcome Back and Review of Day One

Geoff Ahern

Laying the Foundations for Personal Resilience

Preventing and managing stress, burnout and compassion fatigue lies in your personal ability to be resilient. You can learn the skills to become resilient. Starting with a self-assessment, this practical session will demonstrate practical ways in which you can develop personal resilience. We will explore:

  • How can understanding yourself help you become resilient?
  • What impact does your belief and value systems have in helping you stay resilient?
  • Practical techniques to help you build your own resilience
Janet Yong

Dietary Adjustments in Type 1 and 2 Diabetes

Patients with a diagnosis of type 1 or 2 diabetes may benefit from certain nutritional approaches. However, with so much pseudo-nutrition advice available for consumption, how can we assess which approaches may best manage certain symptoms? This session considers the evidence behind these nutritional approaches and discusses:

  • Are there any differences between the dietary adjustments that need to be made by patients with type 1 or 2 diabetes?
  • Is there a potential risk of adverse effects if persons with type 1 or 2 diabetes follow fad diets?
10:45 Morning Tea


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 the wound 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 – Factors Affecting Chronic Wound Healing

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?
12:45 Lunch and Networking

Geoff Ahern

Healthcare Professionals and Addictions

The TV show Nurse Jackie showed us a healthcare professional with an addiction to prescription medication and, though people have complained about it, it highlights an issue that affects nurses and other healthcare professionals worldwide. This session will explore:

  • What are the reasons why some healthcare professionals become addicted to prescription medication, alcohol and/or other drugs?
  • Are there any challenges faced by healthcare professionals who want to seek treatment for these addictions?
  • How can we help our colleagues who may be addicted to prescription medication, alcohol and/or other drugs?
Geoff Ahern

Who Really Uses It? Facts About Ice

The impact of ice and methamphetamine use is now well known to have a highly disruptive impact on some individuals. If you are this individual, these effects may well extend to families and communities. However, a conversation around this drug also needs to consider who exactly uses these drugs, what is actually the prevalence of use and how big of a problem are concurrent mental health issues? This session will challenge your perceptions of ice and methamphetamine use and address:

  • Rebuffing the myths – who actually uses ice and how big a problem is it?
  • How does the media influence our perception of ice and a typical ‘ice addict’?
  • How extensive is ice use compared to other drugs of addiction?
  • Are we talking enough about co-existing mental health conditions?
3:15 Afternoon Tea

Michelle Robins

Diabetes and Diabetes Emergencies - Essentials for All Nurses

Diabetes emergencies can occur for a range of reasons, cause a great deal of anxiety and may be life-threatening. In this session, you will learn about current best-practice nursing care for common diabetes-related emergencies. Includes:

  • What are diabetes emergencies, what to watch for and how to respond?
  • Care of diabetes-related emergencies in the hospital and other settings
  • An update on the most common medications used to treat these conditions
4:45 Close of Conference and Evaluations

The Goal

Need for Program

Good patient care is directly related to the quality of the nursing care being provided. The healthcare environment is rapidly changing and all nurses are faced with the constant challenge of keeping their knowledge, skills and practice up-to-date. As well, the amount of new knowledge available is increasing. To achieve the desired patient outcomes, utilising informed, safe and competent nursing practice is vital. In addition, continuing professional development is a professional regulatory requirement.

Purpose of Program

The purpose of this conference is to enable all nurses to remain up-to-date on a range of current professional and clinical practice topics.

Your learning outcomes:

Identify behaviours that cause illness in people in order to plan care to prevent health deterioration
Optimise interprofessional collaboration with the intention of enhancing better patient outcomes
Apply new knowledge about a range of conditions to provide holistic care
Underpin patient outcomes with evidence-based practice, recognised standards, and guidelines


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Janet Yong

Janet Yong is a dual qualified Accredited Practising Dietitian and Credentialed Diabetes Educator. She has a decade long experience working with clients with diabetes in both hospital and community settings. She is passionate about educating and empowering her clients to improve their health through practical and realistic dietary and lifestyle changes. She runs a private practice called Holistic Dietetics and her motto in life is: Eat Well, Move More and Love Life! Read More

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Geoffrey Ahern

Geoffrey Ahern is a senior mental health clinician and educator who splits his time between working with people in a mental health crisis in the ED setting and working proactively to educate other health professionals and the community about how to better understand mental health problems, as well as substance use and addiction. Over the years, he has gained extensive experience in emergency and trauma, rural nursing, alcohol and other drug counselling, and psychiatric nursing across both the public and private sectors. He holds a masters of health science (mental health and addiction). Geoff is particularly fascinated by the impact that exercise, nutrition, community, meaning and purpose, and practices like yoga have on a person’s mental health, as well as living a simple life of reflection, contentment and wonderment. Read More

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To Be Determined

 Read More

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Bobby Mehta

Bobby Mehta is a highly experienced and award-winning senior pharmacist with over twenty years of professional practice and extensive knowledge of international pharmacy. Having qualified and worked in the UK for the majority of his professional career, he became one of the world's first qualified prescribing pharmacists and has spent the last seven years employed within the Australian pharmacy sector, an experience that has mirrored the UK pharmacy transition from a prescription-led to a service-led model of pharmacy. Bobby's main focus has been on the design and implementation of professional services, developing functional integrative medicine models in community pharmacies and a strong passion for developing people through effective learning and development programs. The use of integrative medicine continues to grow, as does the corresponding evidence base, and Bobby is a firm believer that qualified, accurate and appropriate advice on their use has never been more relevant. Read More

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Michelle Robins

Michelle Robins is a credentialed diabetes educator with 23 years of experience in many aspects of diabetes care and education. She is currently employed as a Nurse Practitioner by Northern Health. Her past employment, as a diabetes educator, has included major tertiary hospital settings, including St Vincent's Hospital, Melbourne, Melbourne Division of General Practice, Melbourne Extended Care and Rehabilitation Service, and, in Queensland, Logan/Beaudesert Health Service. Michelle has served on more than 40 diabetes-related committees, written book chapters, and is consistently highly evaluated in her teaching role. Read More


10 - 11 Sep 2020


Mercure Ballarat Hotel & Convention Centre
613 Main Road
Golden Point VIC,3350


$629.00 (two days)
Book Online Now  
A message about Ausmed events

Events held in September onwards are scheduled to proceed. We hope to see you at an Ausmed Event soon!