Mater Nurse shortlisted for Young Australian of the Year

30/Nov/2020     Health

Meet Clinical Nurse Annabel McKay who has been shortlisted for Young Australian of the Year due to her outstanding work in the field of nursing over the past 10 years. She is now working in Ward 8 North and East of Mater Private Hospital Brisbane.

Currently on maternity leave with her beautiful five-month-old baby boy, Annabel took some time out of her busy schedule to share her story about her nursing career with us.

“I felt very overwhelmed when I found out I was a finalist. To learn someone had taken time out of their busy schedule and think I am worthy of such a prestigious award is incredibly humbling,” Annabel said.

“I have worked at Mater for 10 years now and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, the values Mater portrays align with my own family values. My colleagues are incredibly caring, and it is a pleasure to work alongside them.”

Annabel says hospital can be perceived as a scary place by patients who can experience fear and anxiety while they are here.

“It is my absolute pleasure to help someone when their health deteriorates and appease their anxiety about their prognosis. Daily, I am in awe of the strength and determination of my patients,” Annabel said.

“The courage they display is inspiring. I hope for a moment in time, my care allows them to forget where they are, why they are there and be the reason they smile in a terribly emotional time in their lives.

“I wish the public understood we are here to help and will do everything in our power to keep patients safe and comfortable.”

In addition to helping patients within Mater, Annabel has dedicated her time to nursing outside Australia in South East Asia and devoted time to helping educate nursing students.

“I have taken annual leave from Mater twice to volunteer in Cambodia. I travelled as a Nurse Educator and upskilled local staff in Phnom Penh,” Annabel said.

“I also work at University of Southern Queensland as an Academic Clinical Facilitator. I teach first- and second-year Undergraduate Nursing students within the Faculty of Health Science and Engineering.

“I want to inspire the next generation of nurses to individualise patient care and make each patient feel safe, it is possible I may undertake a PhD.”

To add to her impressive list of accolades, Annabel has also received the Australian Graduate Nurse of the Year, Pride of Australia Medal for Care and Compassion and the Professor Catherine Turner Medal for Excellence in Nursing.


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