About Donna

Donna Layden has been a nurse since 2002.  She is a Clinical Nurse in the school based youth health program, working out of the Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service.

Donna Layden 

As a new graduate, I started my career in Intensive Care, where I worked for 11 years.  I became proficient in untangling ‘spaghetti’ lines, operating multiple IV pumps, managing a ventilator, monitoring equipment and running dialysis.  
I found great satisfaction in caring for my patients and ensuring they were clean, comfortable and, if they had pain, it was managed well. 
I maintained a sense of calm for my patients in an environment that can often sound chaotic with alarms.  
I can recall on my last shift before taking maternity leave that four patients out of 10 were there because they had tried to take their lives.   
I had always wanted to do something in the area of mental health, but wanted to work in a space where I could feel like I was making a difference.
So I completed a Grad Dip in health promotion and started looking for opportunities. 
I applied for a Clinical Nurse position as a School Based Youth Health Nurse.  
With my tertiary knowledge, I have been able to develop and implement a health promotion project that aims to promote mental health and early intervention for high school students.  
This project has now been shared state-wide with other SBYHNs and education staff, and offers a co-ordinated approach to promoting youth mental health in the school setting.

  << Home   Next story >>