Committee

Executive Team

Kate Swetenham, President

Information coming soon.

Joshua Cohen, Vice President

Josh has been a specialist palliative care nurse for more than 10 years. He is currently employed as a palliative care nurse practitioner at Calvary Health Care Kogarah where he brings his passion for end-of-life care into the residential aged care setting.  

Previously, Josh was a member of the hospital palliative care consult team at Concord Hospital and part of an international faculty delivering palliative care teaching in Sri Lanka. Today, Josh is the Chair of Palliative Aged Care Network, NSW and an Honorary Associate at the Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney. He holds a Master in Palliative Care from Flinders University and a Master of Nursing, Nurse Practitioner from the University of Sydney. 

Aileen Collier, Secretary

Information coming soon.

Katy Long, Treasurer

Katy is a Chartered Management Accountant, and has worked in a variety of industries in the UK and Australia over the last 20 years, most recently as Financial Controller for a professional services firm. Katy has previously volunteered as Treasurer in a not-for-profit organisation, and is excited to be working with Palliative Care Nurses Australia.

Committee Members

Claudia Virdun, Committee Member

Claudia has nursed for 22 years and worked in palliative care for 19 of these in either a clinical, academic or policy focused role. She is currently a Senior Lecturer for the Faculty of Health at the University of Technology Sydney. Prior to this, she led a team at Palliative Care Australia to run the National Standards Assessment Program (NSAP). Clinically, Claudia has worked in large metropolitan tertiary centres (both in Australia and England) and in an Australian rural setting, mostly in Palliative Care Clinical Nurse Consultancy roles.

Claudia has completed an Honours degree (Nursing), Masters degree and is currently a Phd Candidate with her research focusing on palliative care within the hospital setting. She has completed prior research looking at education models supporting the integration of Palliative Care knowledge into Residential Aged Care Facilities; looking at adult and paediatric palliative care in both practice and philosophy; and nurse competence and how to measure this against variable training settings.

Claudia has also led significant project work including the Rural Palliative Care Project, Aged Care Access Initiative, Aged Care Panel work and supported many other projects through collaborative partnerships. Claudia is passionate about Palliative Care and how such an approach to care enhances the quality of life of those with serious and progressive illness.

Anna Nicholas, Committee Member

Anna has worked for last 21 years in Palliative Care.  In this time, Anna has worked in Clinical, Managerial and Education, although predominantly in NSW and as a Clinical Nurse Consultant in both the Community and the Acute Care Setting.

Since moving to Tasmania, Anna has worked as a Clinical Nurse Consultant in Palliative Care at the Royal Hobart Hospital.  This year she has began a project role to improve end of life care in the acute care setting with a focus to develop a state wide end of life care plan.  Anna has a particular interest in dying in the Acute Care setting and how we can improve this experience for both the patients and their families.

Anna will complete her Master’s Degree in Palliative care through Flinders University this November this year.

Libby Miller, Committee Member

Libby, (also known as Elizabeth), is currently undertaking a full-time PhD at Federation University Australia, Gippsland campus, under the supervision of Associate Professor Joanne Porter and Dr Michael Barbagallo. Her current research is examining environmental factors - the natural, built, social (behaviour and language), and symbolic environments where people may receive bad news about their life-limiting illness within the palliative care unit. Two publications relating to the examination of the background literature have been published. These works were presented at the recent 2021 Oceanic Palliative Care conference (21OPCC).

Libby completed her nursing (honours) degree in 2019 receiving an H1 distinction for the thesis titled 'The exploration of the role of primary carers who are providing end of life care in the home: A qualitative study of carers in Gippsland, Victoria.' Two articles have been published from the findings of this research project.

Libby completed a Bachelor of Nursing in 2017 with high distinctions and received the University Medal for outstanding achievement.  During that year she participated in a 3-week nursing placement at Scheer Memorial Hospital in Benapa, Nepal, igniting a passion to explore carer roles and the hospital environment for people with palliative and end-of-life needs through an honours research project.  For 18 months during her studies, Libby also provided personal and nursing care to residents living in Dalkeith Hostel, Traralgon, a 54 bed residential aged care facility. As a registered nurse at Latrobe Regional Hospital, Libby gained medical, palliative, surgical and hospital in the home clinical experience.

Before returning to study, Libby worked as a first aid officer and administrator for 10 years in a large regional private school in Gippsland.

Rebecca Palmer, Committee Member

Information coming soon.

Kylie Draper, Committee Member

Information coming soon.

Sarah Begley, Committee Member

Information coming soon.