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New dental trainee for NWHHS
Image Caption: Serena Pigliafiori
Having Serena Pigliafiori join the North West Hospital and Health Service Team is something to smile about.
As she carries on a family tradition of Aboriginal health careers, North West Hospital and Health Service (NWHHS) was delighted to welcome new dental assistant trainee Serena Pigliafiori this year.
Serena joins the team as part of an initiative to improve oral health literacy, provide more culturally responsive oral health care to First Nations people and build the local workforce.
Serena comes from a long line of health professionals, including her late grandmother who was a Senior Aboriginal Health Worker at Cloncurry Community Health for over 35 years. Her mother Lila is a registered nurse with the HHS, and her brother Caleb is a current cadet with Queensland Ambulance Service.
Serena’s journey into dentistry was inspired by her family’s chosen health pathways, and two months into the traineeship, nineteen year-old Serena said she was enjoying the experience so far.
“My inspiration for working in health comes from seeing family members pursuing a career in health and finding much joy in the work that they do,” she said.
From this, I too aspired to work within the health industry and endeavour to do the very best I can to provide services to those in our community”.
Serena’s day-to-day duties are mainly procedure-based beginning from the moment a patient walks into the clinic to the time they walk out. She is enjoying the professional working environment so far and prioritises customer service and engagement with all patients. She looks to prepare and support each patient as much as possible, to ensure they receive the best service for their oral hygiene.
North West HHS Executive Director of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health, Christine Mann, said she was extremely pleased to see Serena join the NWHHS team.
“It’s a positive step helping to improve access to dental care by encouraging opportunities to increase the number of Aboriginal health professionals and in this case, health technicians delivering dental services”, Ms Mann said.
“This is a first in partnering with Clinical Excellence Queensland in their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Dental Assistant Traineeship Program and has been very much driven by our Oral Health Services team led by Principal Dentist, Dr Rachel Seadon.”
As part of this program Serena will complete a Certificate III in Dental Assisting while working in rural and remote public dental clinics with great prospects if wanting to continue in the oral health discipline.