HDWAHealth Department of Western Australia
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This questioning was in the context of reported problems in recruiting nurses in Australia (Senate Community Affairs Committee 2002; DEandWR 2002), forecast shortfalls in future supply (Human Services Victoria 1999; HDWA 1995; Preston 2002), an ageing nurse workforce and a flurry of government reports into nursing workforce issues.
The career structure, along with the move of training to tertiary education, was not universally accepted by either nurses or other health professionals and this spawned a further series of enquiries (Perrett and Monck 1990; HDWA 1990).
The HDWA designates all areas outside the Perth metropolitan region as either rural or remote and acknowledge that nurses provide the highest proportion of health care in rural and remote regions (Health Department of Western Australia, 2000b; National Rural Health Alliance, 2002a, 2002b).