18 - 20 Aug 2021

Nursing Children Conference - Melbourne 2021

10h 45m
QRC: 4176
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Why Attend

Do you regularly, or even occasionally, care for children but do not work in a paediatric unit? If so, you still need regular CPD updates on nursing care of children. Attend this conference and find out about:

  • Flu vaccine allocation in an emergency – ethical considerations
  • Immunisation updates
  • Children – household products and domestic poisons
  • Toddler food refusal
  • Managing “hypos” … in children
  • Autism and eating disorders
  • Cystic fibrosis – current practical management
  • Child protection and forensic nursing
  • Apologising when things go wrong, including open disclosure


8:30 Registration for Day One


Children – Household Products and Domestic Poisons

Household products represent a huge potential for accidental poisoning. Many medicines, disc/button batteries, some cleaning products and other common household agents can pose significant risks to children. While preventative measures, such as supervision and safe storage, can prevent mishaps, accidents do occur and can be severe and life-threatening. This informative session will bring you up-to-date with household poisoning risks, as well as:

  • The epidemiology of paediatric poisoning
  • Common low-risk paediatric exposures
  • High-risk paediatric exposures
  • Giving home first aid
  • Preventing poisoning in the home
Michele Meehan

Toddler Food Refusal – The Battle You Will Never Win

Although toddlers are a delightful and trying challenge, food provides a perfect medium for the struggle for independence. Many toddlers use food to test their power, but others can create scenarios that gradually restrict their diet by avoiding new foods or creating meal times that are a nightmare for the whole family. This interactive session looks at:

  • How to educate parents about appropriate management strategies and healthy eating
10:45 Morning Tea

Dr Brooke Harcourt

Autism and Eating Disorders

Eating disorders may emerge in children with autism. This can lead to a raft of secondary health conditions, such as low energy and anaemia. The clinical significance of such eating disorders needs to be both understood and managed appropriately. This session looks at the link between autism and eating and includes:

  • How eating disorders manifest in a child with autism
  • Early signs of eating disorders
  • How eating disorders can be avoided

Current Community Practices in Cystic Fibrosis: Working with Children and their Families

Cystic fibrosis (also called CF) is the most common, life-limiting genetic condition affecting Australians. 3,500 people are living with CF in Australia and 1 in 25 people carry the recessive CF gene. Babies born today with CF can expect to live well into adulthood. As CF causes an abnormal build-up of thick and sticky mucus in the lungs, airways and digestive system, patients with CF require intensive daily physiotherapy to clear the lungs and airways, countless medications and frequent hospitalisations. There is no cure but advances in treatment and care are helping people to better manage their CF. This session looks at:

  • A brief history and description of cystic fibrosis
  • Common environmental risks for children living with cystic fibrosis
  • Ways for schools to support children with cystic fibrosis
  • What supports are available to children and families
1:00 Lunch and Networking

Rebecca Gebert

Update on Type 1 Diabetes in Children

This session offers an update on type 1 diabetes as it affects children. In particular, it looks at the latest information about this condition and the current management options. It includes:

  • Managing the underlying condition – the latest evidence
  • Appropriate management of sick days
  • Assisting a child in adapting to their condition as they grow up
  • Supporting the family to live a normal life in the community
3:00 Afternoon Tea

Rebecca Gebert

Childhood Diabetes and Insulin

The use of insulin is a fact of life for many children with diabetes. This evidenced session looks at the current approach to insulin use and includes:

  • Continuous glucose monitoring (CGM)
  • Continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII)
  • What to do if a “hypo” occurs
  • The main considerations when applying a holistic approach to the care of a child with insulin dependency
4:30 Close of Day One of Conference

9:00 Commencement of Day Two

Sonja Elia

Immunisation Updates

Immunisation is a foundation stone of modern healthcare. It enables large groups of people to be protected from harmful diseases. This session will rapidly bring you up-to-date on current immunisations. It includes:

  • Should all children receive the same vaccines?
  • Who are considered special risk groups?
  • Catching-up schedules if a child has delayed or missed doses
  • Legislation and immunisation

Understanding ADHD

Additional deficit hyperactivity disorder is described as “a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development…” (DSM-5). Deciding if a child has ADHD is a process involving several steps and there is no single test for diagnosis. This session includes:

  • What are the early signs and symptoms of ADHD?
  • What other conditions may be associated with, or mimic ADHD?
  • What are the empirically-proven treatments?
  • Understanding ADHD in the context of the child’s developmental strengths and weaknesses
  • Trajectories of ADHD across the lifespan
11:00 Morning Tea

Michele Meehan

Anxiety in Young Children

Anxiety in young children is a normal part of development. At times though, it can be crippling to children and alter development. This session will explore the different types of anxiety and how we, as caregivers, can help improve outcomes. It includes:

  • What are the different types of anxiety – social, separation and generalised
  • What level of anxiety is normal and an expected part of childhood development
  • The role of a nurse in improving outcomes for children experiencing anxiety
Emma King

Common Paediatric Skin Conditions and Case Studies

When a child has an itchy rash, it can be very confounding for a clinician. This session looks at common causes of itchy rashes and what you need to know to manage them. It includes:

  • How to differentiate one rash from another
  • Which rashes are serious and which are not
  • When to isolate and refer
1:00 Lunch and Networking

Joanne Dean

Overview of Forensic Nursing and Child Abuse

Nurses have an important role in the identification and protection of vulnerable children. Forensic nurses have a deeper understanding of this area and, with their colleagues, have developed advancements in approaches to identification and management. This session looks at:

  • What is the role of forensic nursing in child protection?
  • How to recognise the subtle signs of child abuse?
  • What about neglect?
  • What about online grooming?
  • What should you do if you suspect child abuse is occurring?
3:00 Afternoon Tea

Amanda Wynne

Open Disclosure and Apologising When Things Go Wrong

Understanding the correct way to apologise when something goes wrong is very important. Open disclosure is essential in such circumstances. This final session looks at your legal responsibilities in these areas and includes:

  • What is the difference between open disclosure and apologising?
  • When and how do you apologise?
  • What are the consequences of not disclosing an error?
4:15 Close of Conference and Evaluations


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Rebecca Gebert

Rebecca Gebert is a Registered Nurse and Credentialled Diabetes Educator. She has extensive experience with childhood and adolescent diabetes, and has been practicing for over 20 years. She has published and contributed at a National and International level in academic journals, and textbooks. She is employed at The Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne, as a Diabetes Nurse Consultant, and is a Diabetes Research Nurse at The Murdoch Research Institute coordinating diabetes advance technology trials. Recently, Rebecca has been offering an independent Paediatric Diabetes Education in Beaumaris.

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Michele Meehan

Michele Meehan is a Maternal and Child Health Nurse currently working in her private practice, 'Parenting Matters', and lecturing on child health topics. Prior to this, she worked for 30 years at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne, as a Clinical Nurse Consultant. Michele holds a Master’s Degree in Health Science - Parent and Infant Mental Health, and wrote her minor thesis on the topic of 'Infant food refusal'. Her qualifications also include midwifery, community health nursing, health education and counselling and psychotherapy.

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To Be Determined

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Sonja Elia

Ms Sonja Elia has worked at the Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) Melbourne for 22 years, in a variety of nursing roles. She has over 16 years of experience in Immunisation and in 2017 endorsed as the first Victorian Nurse Practitioner in the field of immunisation. Sonja has previously held positions as the Nurse Manager of SAEFVIC, Academic Consultant for the La Trobe University Nurse Immuniser program as well as a current member of the Immunisation Coalition. She is currently the Nurse Practitioner and Manager of the Immunisation service at the RCH.

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Amanda Wynne

Amanda Wynne is a barrister at the Victorian Bar whose practice includes family law, child abuse, family violence, mental health, health profession disciplinary panels, coronial inquests, victims of crime, and guardianship and administration regarding the elderly. Amanda also holds nursing qualifications and is an experienced general nurse, midwife, and maternal and child health nurse, last practising in May 2009. She regularly presents pertinent legal seminars to the healthcare profession.

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Emma King

Emma King is a Nurse Practitioner, and has been employed at The Royal Children’s Hospital since 1991 and as a Dermatology Nurse Practitioner since starting the role 25 years ago. The introduction of the nursing role has led to a large expansion of the eczema service at the RCH and is recognised as a leader in eczema care. She is acknowledged for her experience and expertise in the area of paediatric dermatology. Emma’s achievements and leadership have been widely recognised, including winning a Victorian Healthcare award for Innovation in Workforce Design for the Eczema Workshops, the RCH Mary Pattern Award, the Deakin University/Health Super Award for leadership in Nursing and a RCH travelling scholarship. Emma consults with patients for a variety of skin diseases in particular eczema and epidermolysis bullosa in outpatient, inpatient and emergency departments and also in private practise at The Children’s Private Medical Group. She developed and instituted a pilot program in eczema education for General Practitioners. She co-developed and instituted two additional Eczema Workshops in two Community Centres in Melbourne in collaboration with General Practitioners. In 2000, she was successful in obtaining substantial funding from The Victorian Department of Human Services to assess and expand the nurse consultant role into the nurse practitioner and additionally develop clinical practice guidelines. This nursing model of care has been used as an example to set up similar roles internationally and nationally. Emma is interested in patient and staff education and workforce design and has spent time in developing countries educating on models of care, paediatric eczema and epidermolysis bullosa.

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Joanne Dean

Joanne is a Registered nurse whose nursing career to date spans over some 20 years. She is the Nurse Unit Manager of the VFPMS based at the Royal Children’s Hospital and has held that role since the founding of the service in 2006. Previous positions have been as a Transport Nurse with the then Newborn Emergency Transport Service (NETS) Victoria, Clinical nurse specialist in the neonatal intensive care, Midwife at a rural hospital, paediatric cardiology and general medicine at RCH. Joanne is also the primary educator to Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) clinicians at their sexual abuse course in regard to the medical aspects of sexual abuse. She also speaks regularly to MCHN, SOCIT (Victoria Police) and other health clinicians about the role of VFPMS and paediatric forensics.

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Brooke Harcourt

Dr Brooke Harcourt is a Senior Research Officer and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Peter Doherty fellow in the Centre for Hormone Research at Murdoch Childrens Research Institute. She is an accredited practicing dietitian and nutritonist and medical researcher investigating the origins of childhood obesity through the Royal Children’s Hospital, Childhood RioRepository of Australia: COBRA study. Our aim is to gain a better understanding of the multifactorial processes that lead to obesity in childhood, so that we can provide better treatments, education and dietary advice to patients.

Need for Program

Providing safe, child-centred care when confronted with paediatric health situations requires specific knowledge about children. It requires a different approach to care to ensure that risk is averted and desired outcomes are achieved. However, it may be difficult for nurses to routinely access such knowledge because it is often considered a specialist area of health. For nurses to remain confident and competent to care for children, regular paediatric updates are essential.

Purpose of Program

The purpose of this conference is to provide child-centred, evidenced education that underpins practice for nurses who regularly work with children.

Your learning outcomes

  • Have confidence in assessing a child who presents with a medical or social condition in your practice setting
  • Provide care to a child that reflects evidence-based treatment that is age and developmentally appropriate
  • Provide psychosocial support and education to children and their carers to minimise anxiety
  • Plan up-to-date, child-centred nursing interventions that promote recovery, health and wellbeing
18 - 20 Aug 2021

Nursing Children Conference - Melbourne 2021

10h 45m
QRC: 4176
Venue TBA, Melbourne
Melbourne, VIC, 3000
Price: $759.00