Farewell from the Outgoing Commissioner
It is cold in the airlock of an emergency department. An elderly lady with a suspected fractured hip lies on a narrow gurney waiting to be seen. It is cold in the airlock, but the triage nurse can find no other place for her, as the emergency department is busy… it is always busy with other trauma and medical emergencies… with other people in their time of need. The ward beds are also full of patients with complex clinical needs too, but thankfully these also with nurses, allied health staff and doctors striving to do their best in delivering the care that our community need. A warm blanket and a watchful caring eye will need to suffice for now…
This is our everyday, the typical, the normal, not the extraordinary. It is in the care and compassion of those who front-up everyday to lift the health and wellbeing of our community that defines the “excellence” referred to in the Commission for Excellence and Innovation in Health. It continues to be the work of the CEIH to support this frontline care through: engaging with clinicians to understand how current care is provided and re-imagine how this care make be enhanced or improved; to invest in clinical teams and partnerships to energize the clinical change that is needed; and, embracing innovations that promise greater efficiency and effectiveness in the care we provide.
This marks the end of my time as the Commissioner and as a clinician within the South Australian Health System. Over the last 20 years, I have been given the enormous privilege to have a small part to play in so many people’s lives, both patients and members of the health system. I will reflect on this time very fondly, the opportunity to be part of a community dedicated to excellence in health care. Thank you for the collaboration, experience, and pursuit of clinical excellence. I feel confident that the South Australian health system is in a place where the continual strive to provide better clinical care remains at the core of its DNA.