This week we’re profiling the amazing women doing great work to improve sexual and reproductive health in our region!
Superheroes of SRH: Sue Reid
Women’s Health/Sexual Health Tallangatta Health Service
- How are you working to improve sexual and reproductive health?
My passion involves continually working towards improving women’s health and sexual health in our small rural community. Having the Nurse Practitioner (NP) role enables me to have a clinical role providing services for women of all ages. A Young Peoples Clinic has been established at the local high school to support young people’s sexual health. This addresses the lack of access, transport and other related issues for young people in a rural area. Just recently we commenced Antenatal Clinics at the Tallangatta Medical Centre, having a Midwifery qualification and a new female GP one day week who has a special interest in obstetrics to support this service. Again, an additional service supporting rural woman who face ongoing issues with costs of transport and who would otherwise have to travel for this service.
- What do you love most about your work?
I love all aspects of my work advocating and supporting women of all ages and their families. Often working with women from a very early age through their changing needs due to ageing is most rewarding. I love being able to work autonomously and when needed in collaboration with the GPs and other health service providers including WHGNE. A big passion of my work is working with vulnerable women and families. I have been very fortunate to work with a women’s health surgical team travelling to Nepal to improve the lives of extremely vulnerable women and their families on several occasions.
- Why is your work important?
Small rural areas can make it is a lot harder for the community to access a variety of services. We have one pharmacy, a small GP Clinic and a health service that does provide a wonderful range of services. However not everyone in the community is in a financial situation to access services in the larger cities Albury/ Wodonga. We do struggle to get GPs, so my work takes the pressure off our local practitioners. The community also faces additional hardships including drought, and over the past years fires, so to be able to support this rural community is a privilege.
- What do you think are the biggest sexual and reproductive health issues facing women that you work with?
The biggest sexual and reproductive health issue for our women includes isolation, financial burdens and we do have issues with domestic violence. Isolation and financial burdens limit the potential for people to access specialist doctors and services in the nearest larger town Wodonga. Having one pharmacy, no transport to Wodonga and a smaller community can be difficult for young people with sexual health issues to remain anonymous. Having the services I provide with the support of Tallangatta Health Service can assist people of all ages with their concerns and needs in the area of sexual and reproductive health.
More information: Tallangatta Health Service