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The Gordon TAFE partners with St John of God to introduce a new companion program

Gordon Health Services Assistance students working at St John of God Geelong hospitalA new stream of Health Services Assistance has been added to The Gordon’s suite of courses to meet the demand for assisting nurses in acute hospital settings. 

A collaboration between St John of God Geelong Hospital (SJGGH) and The Gordon will see Gordon students training on the ward with a focus on preventing falls as part of the companion program. 

This program prepares students in becoming nurse support workers, learning how to assist nurses in acute care settings and offers students supported practical placements in a hospital setting.

The 20-week course provides three days of placement per week alongside St John of God nurses. The Gordon’s Business Manager of Health and Community Services, Joanne Jones said, “This is a great opportunity for students to gain real hands-on experience under the guidance of nursing staff and have the chance to be a part of important research into falls in an acute setting.”  

“The new St John of God Health Services Assistance program is a win-win for everyone. The students are learning valuable work skills, and we have additional hands and eyes to help deliver targeted care on our acute wards,” said Vanessa Tran, Director of Nursing at St John of God Geelong Hospital.  

This acute care stream is suited to those who are compassionate, empathetic, patient and have a desire to enhance the lives and standard of care for hospital patients. In addition, you will need to bring a “can do” attitude, be open to learning, have great communication skills.

Deakin University has partnered with SJGGH and The Gordon to evaluate the effectiveness of this program in reducing falls, with Gordon students participating in this study.
A career as a health services assistant is rewarding and successful completion of this program may lead to further job opportunities with St John of God Geelong Hospital . There are limited numbers for this program so it is advised to apply early. The program commences in March 2022. For more information, visit