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want to work in mental health

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Author want to work in mental health

ms cat


  • Joined: Nov 2006
  • Location:
  • Posts: 8

Mon Nov 20, 2006 5:11 pm

I have been working in surgical department for a year, would like to have a change. I am interested in mental health. I applied a graduate program in July this year, but did not get a position. I have to apply again next year. I have been searching a lot of job ad. but lot of them require experiences. I am not sure should i apply a graduate mental health program next year, because I am not a new graduate nurse anymore.

last year I went to a nursing expo. , one of the hospital staff told me hospital get funding from hospital if they employ new graduate nurse. Is that ture?? When i went for a job interview in September this year, the interviewer told me she will take new graduate nurse first, if the positions are not filled up, then, she will consider me.

it is strange, i am desperate to find a position in mental health, i am not a new grad and was told I am not their first priority choice. Now, i am in grade 2 year 3, it may be getting harder and harder to find a job, as my rate is higher that new grad nurse, lot of hospital would rather take a new grad nurse than me, as they are cheaper.

any suggestion for me, helping me to find a job.......



  • Joined: Apr 2007
  • Location:
  • Posts: 135

Jul 20, 2007, 05:45 pm

Hello ms cat ! Do you live in Brisbane? Are you a RN? I may have a suggestion.

Senior RN


  • Joined: Dec 2008
  • Location:
  • Posts: 24

Dec 25, 2008, 09:01 am

Hi there,

Look, I've worked in Mental Health for years in the Sydney area, and we have several 'agencies' that specialise in Mental Health work.

With many psych units taking patients with multiple medical problems, as well as their psych issues, hospitals are always willing to pay for the most experienced staff they can get.

My employers actually prefer RN8+ staff to first years. I've worked in places where, the RN in charge will REFUSE to accept first year RNs, due to their lack of experience with aggressive psych patients.

Check out you local agencies. Make your preference, and stick to it. Don't get tricked by an agency telling you ther's no Mental Health shifts, because that's part of their MO, to fill the harder medical wards first. (though, sometimes, there may be a genuine shortage of psych shifts ).

BTW, try to do an 'aggression management' course somewhere.... this is generally part of the OH&S requirements, and will give you a head start in Mental Health.

Best of luck,


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