CEOs report - APNA’s impact continues to increase

By Ken Griffin, APNA CEO 

Source: APNA Primary Times Winter 2023 (Volume 23 Issue 1)


With more members, the largest team and the greatest presence in media and government than at any other time over the past 21 years, the APNA Board and Executive have been taking steps to plan and manage our growth, including:  

  • Developing a new 5-Year Strategic Plan: This plan recognises the opportunities and barriers for PHC nurses, the growth of APNA, the need for it to continually strive for excellence and the importance of maintaining a strong PHC nursing voice. 
  • Increasing the size of the APNA Board: Recognising the benefit of having additional skills and experience to help guide APNA's growth, the APNA Board has increased the number of elected nurse board member positions from five to six. 
  • Conducting a review of the APNA Constitution: The APNA Constitution was last updated in 2018. The Board has engaged a Constitution Review Committee and independent legal advisors to advise how the Constitution may need to be reviewed to enable APNA's continued growth and success. 

We continue to have an impact in areas where it matters most and several achievements so far this year have been: 

Strengthening Medicare Taskforce: The budget outcomes from the program show that the current government is listening to nurses and is backing change, particularly in the utilisation of nurses in aged care, general practice and nurse practitioners. APNA will continue to engage with the government to advance change for all PHC nurses, including through the scope of practice review. 

Student Nurse Placement Program: APNA has been lobbying for 4 years for a PHC student nurse placement program. In the meantime, we built our own program, placing students in almost every PHC setting. With government support, APNA will continue to grow the number of student placements in PHC, including an additional 1,800 nursing students in aged care and more placements in general practice.  

Nursing in Primary Health Care Program: For almost 10 years, APNA has been enabling PHC nurses through the Building Nurse Capacity Clinics, helping nurses new to primary health care get established in their careers through the Transition to Practice Program and increasing the skills of nurses in the Chronic Disease Management and Healthy Ageing program. The Commonwealth Government has funded this program for a further 3 years, which will have a tangible benefit for nurses and Australia's health. 

Without a doubt, there is more to be done and we will continue to champion primary health care nurses and work with you to develop practical, timely solutions.  

Thanks to every APNA member who has been involved in helping bring about some of these solutions, whether you have sat on a committee, represented APNA at a forum, supervised a nursing student, or mentored a transitioning nurse. We couldn't do it without your expertise and energy.  

Thanks to every APNA member who has been involved in helping bring about some of these solutions, whether you have sat on a committee, represented APNA at a forum, supervised a nursing student, or mentored a transitioning nurse. We couldn't do it without your expertise and energy.  

Working together, we will continue to have an impact on our profession, on health policy and the health of Australia. 

Finally, this year we will bring nurses together again at the Festival of Nursing in Perth. When we bring nurses together, good things happen. If you haven’t got your ticket yet, don’t miss the chance to reconnect, learn and re-energise in Perth in July. 

Thanks for your support, and see you in Perth. 

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