Registered nurse Richard Williams is the new manager at Walcha’s Apsley Riverview Hostel, and he has hit the ground running.
One of his first actions after starting last week was to hold a meeting with all staff at the hostel to discuss the importance of an open culture in aged care.
Mr Williams said it was important for him personally to lead a group of people who have the residents safety as their highest priority.
“I spoke with the team here yesterday on my feelings about that, and how it is important that we are always listening and watching for anything that might not be quite normal so we can address it,” he said. “And that is the best thing we can do really.”
Mr Williams started on September 26 and said his first impressions are very good.
“I am impressed with the friendliness and openness of the residents, staff and visitors,” he said.
“Everyone has been very welcoming toward me.”
Originally from Warialda Mr Williams is the first in his family to go into the medical field.
I was drawn to this position by the prospect of working closely in such a great home that is so connected to the communityRichard Williams
“I think without really knowing it having conversations with one of my wife’s family members who was a nurse must have had an impact on me,” he said.
“I actually had intended to be a high school teacher and then had a realisation that high school children wouldn’t really be attentive to me all the time. So I thought nursing would be a far better opportunity to help people who actually wanted to be helped.”
Mr Williams and his family have been in Tamworth since 2001, where he has worked as a Registered Nurse in a variety of clinical and management roles, in both hospital and community settings.
“Since 2013 I have worked in an aged care home in Tamworth, and I have been the manager there for the last three years,” Mr Williams said.
“This role will be similar to my previous role in many aspects, but I am excited to have the opportunity to be working in such a close-knit community. I was drawn to this position by the prospect of working closely in such a great home that is so connected to the community.”
Getting to know the residents, families and staff is an immediate priority says Mr Williams.
“As is developing an understanding of our strengths and opportunities as a home to help me ensure we continue to do a great job of caring for the residents here,” he said.
Mr Williams will remain living in Tamworth where he has two sons in school, and his wife runs a fresh produce business, growing and providing culinary herbs to sell to local restaurants.