RFDS WA crew celebrate double win at 2022 Rural Health West Excellence Awards

RFDS WA crew celebrate double win at 2022 Rural Health West Excellence Awards

Date published

25 Oct 2022

The RFDS WA team took out two top prizes with Broome Nurse Marianne Testi being awarded Rural Nurse/Midwife of the Year and the RFDS WA COVID-19 vaccination team winning the Building Healthy Country Communities Award.

Marianne with Damien and Kieran

Rural Nurse/Midwife of the Year – Marianne Testi

Marianne Testi, who has worked as an RFDS Flight Nurse for 30 years and has served regional communities as a Registered Nurse and Midwife for almost her entire 43-year career, is celebrating her newest achievement as Rural Nurse/Midwife of the Year.

Marianne was nominated for her unwavering commitment and vital contributions to rural health in WA, in particular COVID-proofing the RFDS' aircraft fleet to ensure service continuity throughout the pandemic, supporting the rebuild of the Broome base and helping to shape the RFDS' vaccination roll out in remote Aboriginal communities.

“I am honoured to receive the recognition that comes with this Award. As a long-serving RFDS nurse, I feel privileged to have a job I love, serving a community I love.’ said Marianne.

Building healthy country communities award

Building Healthy Country Communities – RFDS COVID-19 vaccination team

Since May 2021, a multidisciplinary team of doctors, pilots, nurses, logisticians, engineers, clinical governance, education and human resources professionals, has played a pivotal role in ensuring COVID-19 vaccines safely reach some of our State’s remote and vulnerable communities.

The team coordinated flights, clinics, vaccine supply and education resources in partnership with many WA health services to ensure excellent standards of clinical governance and cold-chain management of vaccines from the ground up.

To date, the RFDS WA COVID-19 Vaccination Team has transported and administered nearly 11,000 vaccines to some of the most hard-to-reach locations in WA.

Marianne and Judith

Alex McMillan RFDS WA Head of Clinical Governance accepted the award on behalf of the team and said she was proud to work with a diverse group of professionals who are all passionate about ensuring equity and quality of care for all Western Australians.

“This project had many challenges, but our team rose above them and worked together with a single goal to ensure our rural communities were not left behind in the COVID-19 vaccination roll-out.”

New RFDS WA CEO Judith Barker who also attended the event said the awards were a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge the hard-working and passionate team at RFDS WA.

“The entire organisation is celebrating these wins,” she said.

“It was fantastic to celebrate with colleagues from across the regional health network and acknowledge the achievements of so many people from different organisations.

“It is a privilege for the RFDS to work alongside the WA Country Health Service and many other organisations to build healthy communities in regional WA.”

The Rural Health Excellence Awards were announced at a gala dinner on Saturday 22 October 2022. The Royal Flying Doctor Service WA was nominated for three awards: Rural Nurse/Midwife of the Year, Clinical Leadership and Building Healthy Country Communities.