Forgot Password

Sign In


  • Company Information

  • Billing Address

  • Are you primarily interested in advertising *

  • Do you want to recieve the HealthTimes Newsletter?

  • Remote health workers safety needed boost

    Author: AAP

A report into the risks facing remote health workers has recommended upgraded alarms and better training.

Clinic and accommodation alarms should be upgraded and personal alarms considered to keep remote health workers safe, a report has found.

Subscribe for FREE to the HealthTimes magazine

The peak body representing remote health workers investigated safety concerns following the death of South Australian outback nurse Gayle Woodford in 2016.

CRANAplus says staff should be accompanied on call-outs and at other times where risks have been identified, and should be better-educated about safety issues.

It's investigation also identified the lack of indigenous clinic staff as having a negative impact on the services available in remote communities and on the safety of nurses and other health workers.


Scout Talent
Registered Nurse & Personal Carers
Frontline Health Brisbane
Care Coordinator
Frontline Health Brisbane
Endorsed Enrolled Nurse
Programmed Health Professionals

"Remote area nurses and other health staff were at increased risk because they frequently did not know the personality or background of community residents or visitors," the report said.

"They were also at increased risk at times, as they were usually last to be aware of tensions in the community and the likelihood of violence."

The body of Ms Woodford, 56, was found in a shallow roadside grave near Fregon, in SA's north, three days after she was last seen on the state's Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands.

Around the time she went missing, an ambulance she used in her work at the Fregon clinic drove away from her home and was intercepted by police several hours later at Coober Pedy after being tracked using its GPS data.

Mimili man Dudley Davey remains in custody, charged with Ms Woodford's murder.

Her death sparked a major push to improve the safety of nurses working in remote communities with an online petition quickly securing more than 130,000 signatures.

CRANAplus chairman Paul Stephenson says the organisation's investigation provided a valuable description of the conditions faced by many remote health workers.

"Working remote differs from many other areas of healthcare, requiring enhanced self-reliance, skills, and professional capability," he said.

The organisation's report will be followed by the development of a set of national safety and security guidelines for outback health workers and a suite of practical resources including on-line training.


Thanks, you've subscribed!

Share this free subscription offer with your friends

Email to a Friend

  • Remaining Characters: 500