Westmead Hospital infection control expert farewells western Sydney

In her nine years as a clinical nurse consultant, Beth White never could have imagined working on the frontline of a global pandemic – especially in the Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) team.

Beth began working at Westmead Hospital in July 2019 and has played an instrumental role in keeping the people of western Sydney safe from infectious diseases.

During this time, Beth has been involved with multiple projects, including developing the infection control advice for the Westmead Health Precinct, during the COVID-19 pandemic and helping establish vaccination centres in western Sydney.

“COVID will hopefully be an experience I don’t have to repeat in my career, but in saying that, it showed me a lot about human nature and was an extremely rewarding experience,” Beth reflected.

“I wanted staff to feel safe with the personal protective equipment that was given to them.

“Delta was a whole new ball game. We went back to the drawing board and had to reassess everything we thought we knew. I was extremely grateful for the support of the executive team and infectious diseases team.”

Beth farewelled Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) last week for another role in health.

“Throughout the whole hospital, there is so much respect. Everyone from the doctors to the nurses, cleaners to the executive, all work so well in supporting each other and making it a great working environment,” she said.

“As a female in the industry, I have loved to work under and alongside some great female role models – Dr Nicky Gilroy, Kate Hackett, Jenelle Matic, and everyone else in the team are such fantastic role models from young women working their way up in the healthcare system. I am proud to have stood alongside them.”

Westmead Hospital general manager Jenelle Matic commended Beth for her hard work and dedication with keeping staff and patients safe and well-informed.

“Beth has played a pivotal role in the hospital, particularly throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” Jenelle said.

“I wish her all the best in her new role and thank her for her ongoing commitment and care she has provided to the staff and communities of western Sydney.”

Beth reflected that her time at Westmead Hospital has been challenging, fascinating, rewarding and everything in between.

“The IPAC team, general services, educators, infectious disease, executive and managers have all worked tirelessly to manage infection control for people within the hospital and the local community

“I felt privileged to be part of the Clinical Expert Advisory Group, where I was one of the few nurses involved,” Beth said.

“All in all, I am going to miss Westmead Hospital dearly. My time here has shaped my career and made me the nurse I am today. I am walking away feeling like I have made a difference, and that is something I am proud of.”

Good luck Beth with your new challenges – we will miss you and thank you for all you have done for western Sydney, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.