What is the life of a flight nurse actually like?

Article supplied by RFDS. What is the life of a flight nurse actually like? Flight nurses are responsible for medical emergency response and delivery of primary healthcare services in the remotest parts of the country. They have to be professionally competent to deal with a wide range of medical emergencies and be able to care for severely ill patients, including infants, children, and the elderly. Flight nurses also have to maintain a good sense of humor and love and care for those they serve. 

Jacinta Jones, a flight nurse based out of Brisbane, is being interviewed in this podcast. She shares her childhood experience of living in different locations with her mother, who was a remote area nurse and witnessing RFDS clinics providing primary healthcare services and evacuations when patients were too unwell to stay in town. 

In this episode, we also discuss the work schedule of flight nurses in Australia. There are seven bases in Queensland, three of which have two 12-hour shifts: a day shift starting at 6 am and a night shift starting at 6 pm. Two bases in the coastal region also follow this schedule, while the other two bases, as well as bases in other states, may have slightly different shift patterns depending on the needs of the region. 

Jacinta shares a story of when they had to land at Dagworth station, where Banjo Paterson wrote Waltzing Matilda, to help an unwell station worker. However, when they tried to take off again, they got bogged down in a green patch on the runway, and the station workers had to help them dig and tow the airplane out. She advises aspiring nurses who are interested in travel to consider flight nursing as a career.

Join us in this new episode of the #FlyingDoctorPodcast podcast as we chat with Jacinta about her world and adventures as a flight nurse.