WHEN choosing a career path, it's important to understand the future prospects in your chosen industry.
What might seem like a great job today might have a pretty limited outlook as far as new opportunities and challenges.
The healthcare sector is as close to future-proof as you'll get. There will always be demand for skilled clinicians and professionals. It's a dynamic, ever-changing industry.
Within the broader sector, nurses are in constant demand, something set to only increase in coming years.
Sue Day, director of clinical services at Bundaberg's Friendly Society Private Hospital, said the demands of an aging population would continue to put pressure on nursing staffing, and create opportunities for those joining the industry.
"There is no substitute for the personal touch and expertise that nurses bring to the treatment and recovery of patients," she said.
"This could be under threat in the years to come as our aging population begins to require greater healthcare assistance and more hospitalisation at the same time that the nursing workforce is aging.
"It is critical young people are attracted to the nursing profession and retained within it."
The hospital offers graduate placements, generally at least 10 each year. Ms Day said the program will continue for the foreseeable future.
"Our program is well supported and enables registered nurses to consolidate their training through practical application and ongoing development of the knowledge and skills required to be a successful nurse," she said.
Ms Day said the core qualities of a good nurse were as much about relating to their patients as about delivering a high standard of care.
"People want to be safe, they want to be treated with courtesy and respect and they want to feel that their needs have been met or understand why they couldn't be," she said.
"Nurses play a critical role in meeting those expectations. Nursing graduates at the Friendly Society Private Hospital are trained to be continually assessing the risks associated with people being ill, vulnerable, and in need of hospital treatment.
"A successful nursing outcome ultimately comes back to the patient and what their expectations of a hospital experience are."