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Celebrating 100 Years of Nursing Organisation

Nurses should wear their brains, not their hearts, on their sleeves, according to United States health care commentator and award-winning journalist Suzanne Gordon who will be presenting as the keynote speaker at NZNO’s centennial conference on September 16. 

Gordon’s keynote address – Because chicken soup isn’t enough: What the public needs from nursing in the 21st century – aims to show why the “sugar and spice and ev­erything caring” view of nursing isn’t enough. Gordon raises the issues nurses must highlight in the 21st century and emphasises nurses’ mind work.


Gordon also believes nursing management must improve. “In health care today, far too few managers know how to teach and coach. For too many, the default position is to discipline and punish. Good team work is a critical patient safety issue and managers must be experts at building and leading great teams. I think there are many interesting things going on in Australia and New Zealand in this regard that I look forward to learning about,” she said.


Minister of health Hon Tony Ryall will be making a brief appearance to speak to the conference participants. Delegates will be especially interested to hear any comments the Minister has to make about the recently released ministerial review group report which suggests significant changes to the health sector.


Other keynote speakers at the centennial conference are Emeritus Professors Nan Kinross and Norma Chick, who will speak on their ex­periences of the transfer of nursing education from hospitals to the tertiary sector, and former New Zealand Nurses Association (NZNA) president and Nursing Council registrar Marie Burgess, who will talk about the history of the Nursing Education and Research Foundation (NERF) and NERF’s oral history collection.


A highlight of the centennial conference will be an appearance by founder and inaugural president of the New Zealand Trained Nurses’ As­sociation (NZTNA) Hester Maclean (aka Ginette McDonald). After the powhiri, she will welcome conference delegates, reminisce on her time as NZTNA president and dispense some wisdom for NZNO’s next century.


Other aspects of the conference include a presentation from the National Library’s Chelsea Hughes on the inclusion of Kai Tiaki Nursing New Zealand editions from 1908 to 1929 on its Papers Past website – the first journal included on the website.


An excerpt from NZNO’s commissioned history, Freed to Care Proud to Nurse, written by Mary-Ellen O’Connor, will be read to delegates.


Chief Nurse Mark Jones, a photography en­thusiast, has been asked to present a camera to the winner of Kai Tiaki Nursing New Zealand’s photographic competition, run to mark NZNO’s centenary.


More than 200 delegates are expected at the centennial conference, including past presidents and national secretaries/chief executives.


Media are invited to attend the Centennial Conference: 16 September, Duxton Hotel, Wakefield St. Wellington (for the full agenda click here)



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