The Champion eNews #88 | September 2020

This issue:

  1. Australian first for Network Nurse Practitioner
  2. Don’t miss these powerful personal stories
  3. Nominations open for Cheryl Burman Award
  4. Annual staff planning day bears significant fruit
  5. And the (survey reply) winners are…

Australian first for Network Nurse Practitioner

Australian first for Network Nurse Practitioner

Hepatology Nurse Practitioner, Tracey Jones (pictured, left), has become the first Australian nurse to be awarded the Associate Fellow – American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases designation. The award recognises clinical excellence and significant contribution to the field of liver disease.

Tracey, who is also a valued member of the Hepatitis NSW Board – is no stranger to ‘firsts’. She was the first hepatology nurse practitioner in NSW; first President of the Australasian Hepatology Association Inc (the peak body representing nurses in the hepatology sector across Australia and New Zealand); and Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network’s first hepatology nurse practitioner, joining them in mid-2019.

Together with the Network’s public sexual health nurses, Tracey provides clinical leadership and mentoring to Network staff to support the care of patients with advanced liver disease, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and other viral infections. Most recently, she has also been supporting the Network’s response to COVID-19.

In yet another first, Tracey has now become the first nurse practitioner in NSW to write a hepatitis C s100 script in the correctional setting. Tracey says this is a significant bonus to the Network, made possible by a change to the PBS legislation in April this year.

“I have tested the systems and confirmed it can be accomplished,” Tracey said. “All Network nurse practitioners are eligible to prescribe s100 medications if it is appropriate to their scope of practice.”

via Justice Health & Forensic Mental Health Network news

Don’t miss these powerful personal stories

Don't miss these powerful personal stories

Our blog – The Hep Vine – has featured several guest posts by Hepatitis NSW peers over the last two months. In these powerful, personal stories they write about their experience of living with hep C, and of fear, stigma, liver health, substance dependency, liver transplant, treatment, and cure. The posts have proved to be affirming for the peers, and inspirational for readers. Don’t miss them!

  • Hep C: The virus, and the fear, are gone
    Susan writes: “Living with hep C had given me a growing sense of dread; the fear of developing cirrhosis or liver cancer intruded more and more into my thoughts.”
  • Feeling better is the new normal after hep C treatment
    Gren writes: “I was diagnosed with hep C in 1990. After the doctor gave me the results, he just said, ‘you have hepatitis C, you should see a specialist’ – and that was the extent of his counselling.”
  • The path to hep C cure was difficult, but I made it
    Paul writes: “Ultimately, I survived hep C because of the new direct-acting antivirals, but it was a long time coming and I had become very sick before I got the chance to be cured.”
  • Challenges… I’ve had more than a few!
    Jarra writes: “The fibroscan of my liver was simple and stress-free. But then I was told I had cirrhosis. This hit me harder than the hep C diagnosis had. Suddenly, dying from this disease seemed like a possibility.”
  • It was a case of second time lucky for my hep C cure
    James writes: “My first treatment was Harvoni. I was suitable for treatment but unfortunately it was unsuccessful. Luckily, within a year a ‘salvage’ treatment – Vosevi – became available.”
  • Hep C Diagnosis & Stigma: I Was My Own Worst Enemy
    Peta writes: “The stigma attached to the virus – not just in the wider community but also within myself – made dealing with my potential diagnosis quite intimidating and extremely hard to cope with.”

Nominations open for Cheryl Burman Award

Cheryl Burman

Cheryl Burman

Hepatitis NSW’s Cheryl Burman Award is an annual prize, awarded to a person or group who have done outstanding work in NSW in the fight against viral hepatitis.

The award pays tribute to Cheryl Burman (pictured left), a key member of the hepatitis C community who provided exceptional leadership in the NSW viral hepatitis response. Cheryl served on the Board of the Hepatitis C Council of NSW from 1993 to 2000 and was President from 1995 to 1999. Cheryl made significant contributions to the governance and leadership of our organisation for almost seven years, and continued to remain friends with and a supporter of Hepatitis NSW. Sadly, Cheryl died on 9 August 2011 after her very long struggle with hep C.

Know someone who should win? The award nomination process for this year has been simplified and streamlined. You can read the Cheryl Burman Award Process & Guidelines and complete the Nomination Form by downloading the Word document, completing it, and scan-emailing it back to us.

Nominees for the award may be focused on:

  • improvement of quality of the lives of people living with hepatitis B or hepatitis C;
  • giving visibility to, or amplifying the voice of, people with lived experience of hepatitis B or hepatitis C;
  • actively working towards the reduction of stigma and discrimination against people living with, or at-risk of hepatitis B or hepatitis C;
  • implementing a project that achieves reduced transmission of hepatitis B or hepatitis C;
  • delivering innovative clinical services that increases access to clinical care and improves the overall health of people with hepatitis B or hepatitis C; or
  • novel research that advances prevention, treatment, or care of people with hepatitis B or hepatitis C.

For further information contact:

phone: 02 8217 7722

The closing date for nominations for this award is 5pm, Monday 28 September 2020

Previous winners

The Cheryl Burman Award has been presented since 2013 with the following people receiving the Award:

  • 2013: Gary Gahan
  • 2014: Vince Fragomeli
  • 2015: Carla Treloar
  • 2016: Janice Pritchard-Jones
  • 2017: Alice Lee
  • 2018: Gail Snelgar
  • 2019: Bev Tyson

To learn more about our exceptional winners and their work >>>CLICK HERE

Nominations open for Cheryl Burman Award
Honorary Life Membership nominations

And don’t forget, nominations for Hepatitis NSW Honorary Life Memberships are still open… but not for much longer! Read more >>> CLICK HERE

Annual staff planning day bears significant fruit

Strategic planning day

Following many months of Hepatitis NSW staff largely working from home due to COVID-19 prescribed semi-office closure, everyone gathered, in late August, for an important strategic planning day. It was wonderful to be able talk, share ideas and generally socialise as a group – albeit with appropriate social distancing observed – over the course of the day, at the impressive facilities of the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence, in Redfern.

We began the day with short overviews of key themes to help set the scene. These were delivered (in person and via Zoom) by Carolyn Murray (NSW Health), Professor Greg Dore (The Kirby Institute), Katelin Haynes, (CEO, Hepatitis Queensland), and Loren Brener (Centre for Social Research in Health). Then, drawing from the goals and outcomes in our 2020-24 Strategic Plan, and very ably facilitated by Greg Masters, there was plenty of thoughtful discussion, penetrating insights, and bold thinking throughout the day!

We will now be looking to develop team and individual business plans by the end of September. Moving forward expect to hear about updated, and new, services, programs, and projects which will help us achieve our goals and to support the needs of the community.

To read our Strategic Plan 2020-2024 >>>CLICK HERE

And the (survey reply) winners are…

Prize draws equals big smiles all aroundIt’s important for Hepatitis NSW to receive feedback on all our resources. This input from people in the community can help us to fine-tune and improve booklets, magazines and even our website. We really rely on the community telling us how we can work better, and so we include survey forms with resources (either printed and/or electronically). Two of our new winners are currently in prison and we really appreciate the feedback we get from NSW prisoners.

To say thank you to people who have taken the time to communicate with us, Hepatitis NSW offers regular draws which award Coles/Myer gift cards. We have recently reviewed all the recent reader survey entries and randomly chosen several lucky people.

We’re pleased to announce the following winners: Ann Marie, Andrew, Renae, Zixi, and Nathan.

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