The youth health nurse works with students, school staff and parents to:
address concerns or problems about health and wellbeing
create a more supportive, healthy school environment (a health promoting school)
connect people to other support services inside and outside the school
The youth health nurse can see young people in private to talk about anything that affects health and wellbeing. The youth health nurse works with the school but is employed by Queensland Health. The nurse is required to keep information confidential unless the young person agrees the nurse can do otherwise. However, if the young person is at risk of being hurt or hurting someone else, the nurse may need to discuss this information with another service or agency. If the nurse thinks it's best to talk to someone else about the problem, they will usually explain the reasons why and talk with the young person about this. In most cases, it is best for young people to also talk to their parents about any problems and concerns they have, and the youth health nurse can help them to do this.
At times it may be best for the young person to see another professional for further assistance, for example the guidance officer, doctor, chaplain or psychologist.
As a general rule, the Youth Health Nurse does not provide:
treatment, e.g. medications, injections, first-aid
ongoing counselling for psychological or educational problems
The youth health nurse also works with the school community to identify and act on issues that may affect the health of students and the school community as a whole. This includes helping with curriculum, teaching and learning activities, supporting the development of an environment and school culture that supports health and wellbeing, and working with community and other services.