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New Director of Clinical Services Settles In

The strong connection between Rochester and Elmore District Health Service and its local community has created an immediate impression on new Director of Clinical Services, Darren Clark.

Since commencing in the role on 18 April this year, Clark has been struck by the rapport between REDHS and the people it serves, noting that the town takes a great interest in and is proud to have its own Health Service.

“I have found the staff, care recipients, their representatives and the community as a whole extremely friendly and supportive,” he said. “Despite the ongoing challenges of COVID, I’m genuinely excited for what the future holds.”

Clark brings a wealth of knowledge and experience, having been the Nursing Director of Aged Care Services at Echuca Regional Health since 2008 prior to accepting the role with REDHS.

He holds tertiary qualifications in Business Management, Gerontology and Forensic Nursing and commenced his healthcare career as a Registered Psychiatric Nurse in 1990. Clark worked in Forensic Psychiatry for seven years and managed a regional Aged Care Facility for eight years prior to a six-year stint as Co-ordinator of Central Grampians Palliative Care Services.

“My immediate priority is to embed the Montessori model of care in our Aged Care Services,” he said. “Montessori promotes true person-centred care, enabling people to be independent, make choices, have high self-esteem and contribute in a meaningful way to their community.

“REDHS has taken the first steps towards implementing this model and it’s a project I’m looking forward to progressing. In the longer-term, my focus will be the continued development and enhancement of a positive work culture across all REDHS services while ensuring optimum staff wellbeing,” Clark said.
“Healthcare has never been a more demanding space and our people are our greatest asset; we must protect, nurture and support them,” he said.

Clark has been appointed to cover Dorothy Stone’s absence. She has accepted a three-year secondment to the Operations and Performance Team in the Public Sector Residential Aged Care Services branch of the Department of Health.