Two leading Griffith University nursing experts have been recognised for their contribution to nursing research by the prestigious Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing (Sigma).

Head of Griffith’s School of Nursing and Midwifery, Professor Ann Bonner, was one of 20 inducted into Sigma’s International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame and ARC DECRA Fellow Dr Jamie Ranse was one of three nurses to receive the Emerging Nurse Researcher for 2021 award.

Other remarkable Griffith nurse researchers previously recognised in the Hall of Fame include Professor Brigid Gillespie (2020), Professor Wendy Moyle (2019) and Professor Wendy Chaboyer (2015).

Professor Ann Bonner

Joining Griffith during the early stages of the pandemic last year, Professor Bonner said being inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2021 was a privilege.

“Being recognised by international peers that my research is of value not only in Australia, but also elsewhere, makes me feel so honoured,” she said.

Professor Ann Bonner.

“It is also thrilling to be inducted alongside many other eminent researchers, including my fellow Australian colleagues.”

Professor Bonner began her career at Westmead Hospital in Sydney, training as a nurse there as she came from a disadvantaged background and could not attend university.

“I then could support myself to go to university as a part-time student to complete my Bachelor, Masters and then PhD while working as a full-time nurse,” Professor Bonner said.

Combining teaching, clinical practice and research, she developed a passion for improving healthcare for people with kidney disease — a disease affecting 10 per cent of the Australian population.

“My research primarily focuses on improving healthcare services and the way all health professionals — not only nurses — provide healthcare to people along the chronic kidney disease trajectory, from slowing the progression of this disease to improving the care for people with kidney failure who might be receiving dialysis or after kidney transplantation,” Professor Bonner said.

She advises early career researchers to use their PhD as a launching pad for their future research career but not to walk the path alone.

“Collaborate with other researchers, join their teams by adding your own skills and experiences,” she said.

“These researchers may or may not be in your own organisation, don’t be afraid or hesitant to contact researchers whose work you are interested in or has some alignment with your own.

“Research is not a sprint, it is a marathon, and small incremental steps and achievements will gradually pay dividends in both personal satisfaction and career development.”

Dr Jamie Ranse

At age 13, Dr Ranse received his first taste of working in health as a volunteer first aid worker for St John Ambulance Australia.

He also provided health care at junior football games, sporting events, festivals and concerts as a teenager, with his interest eventually leading to a career in emergency nursing.

“As an emergency nurse, I noticed the impact that mass gatherings and disasters had on our ambulance services and emergency departments,” Dr Ranse said.

Dr Jamie Ranse.

“I started to question what the best ways were to minimise the impact of mass gatherings and disasters on emergency health services.”

With little literature or experience to guide policy or decision-making available at the time, Dr Ranse has spent the past decade researching the area to assist in the development of an evidence based approach to inform policy and guidelines locally, nationally and internationally.

To achieve this, Dr Ranse worked in partnership with communities, government, non-government, industry, and academic organisations.

“The collaborative nature of my work ensures that the outcomes of my research are translated to practice and better understandings of mass gatherings and disasters impact on health services by industry partners,” he said.

In 2020, Dr Ranse led the development of the Queensland Industry Framework for Safe Events, which set out key principles event organisers needed to consider when planning events during the pandemic.

Dr Ranse said it was an honour to be recognised by Sigma.

Griffith University was recognised earlier this year as a leader in Nursing and Midwifery education and research, securing second position globally in the prestigious ShanghaiRanking’s Global Ranking of Academic Subjects 2021.

3: Good Health and Well-being
UN Sustainable Development Goals 3: Good Health and Well-being

4: Quality Education
UN Sustainable Development Goals 4: Quality Education