The Leo Casey Scholarship is named for the former long-serving Chair of Rural Northwest Health. The scholarship is provided to recipients to increase the capability and capacity of the organisation’s workforce to deliver high quality and safe care and other services to agency customers. The scholarship holds true to the values of Leo Casey who advocates life-long learning and developing knowledge and skills to enrich the lives of others, particularly in a rural health setting.
The 2022 Leo Casey Scholarship was presented to Katrina Fallon who works at Yarriambiack Lodge. Katrina was also presented with the scholarship in 2019.
The funds have assisted Katrina to undertake the first unit of the Transition to Speciality Palliative Care course delivered as part of the Australian College of Nursing Graduate Certificate.
Katrina was attending a lesson from the Palliative Care Team at Federation University in Horsham as part of her Enrolled Nurse training when she experienced the epiphany that would become a consuming interest. “The old cliché of two things being certain in life connected directly with me and my work. I knew then that assisting with dying with dignity would be a consuming passion,” she said.
Katrina notes that rural shortages of palliative care specialists places pressure on agencies that support people to live as long as possible in familiar environments. “Eventually, I hope to be able to provide advice to other organisations and community members,” Katrina added.
Leo Casey reiterated his best wishes for Katrina. “I am so pleased that Katrina is pursuing her interest in palliative care as it is so important for smaller rural communities,” he said.