Fremantle Hospital mental health nurse strives to make a difference

Clive Batchelor. Photo: Andrew Ritchie. d491644
Clive Batchelor. Photo: Andrew Ritchie. d491644

INSPIRED by his parents, Fremantle Hospital nurse Clive Batchelor wants to make a difference to patients lives.

Mr Batchelor works in a small nurse-lead team that supports 10 clients with a wide variety of mental health difficulties.

“On a daily basis I help clients work through the many symptoms of mental illness be it psychosis, depression, anxiety, personality disorder and emotional dysregulation,” he said.

“Clients regularly experience suicidal and self harm thoughts, substance misuse issues and a general temporary inability to function in social situations.

“Using talking therapy skills alongside multidisciplinary team therapies I help people explore other options and escape dark or traumatic places in their heads.”

Mr Batchelor, whose parents also worked in the mental health field, said as a child he regularly visited large psychiatric hospitals.

“Initially they were scary but then became a second home and a larger family for me,” he said.

“I grew up getting to know clients and staff in those days, the doctors intimated me but clients were so friendly and always wanted to share stories.”

Mr Batchelor has been announced as a finalist in the Excellence in Registered Nursing category at the 2019 WA Nursing and Midwifery Excellence Awards.

He said he loved the challenge of taking someone from a low troubled place to a better place.

“Getting to know people not just their mental health difficulty but building a picture of the lives they have led and aspirations they have,” he said.

“The challenges in my job is the stigma against mental health.

“For me though the impact of transference, listening to multiple sad traumatic stories and peoples toughest thoughts and feelings and staying strong to help them.”

He said he was shocked and embarrassed when he found out he was named as a finalist.

“Our jobs are not full of overt targets and awards and I find it hard to take an award individually when we work so much as a team to help others,” he said.

“I include other clients in this as they help each other out whilst in rehab or hospital so much.

“Part of me is proud and humbled to be recognised and it definitely makes me feel warm inside.”

Winners will be announced on May 11.