HAYLEY Bower has made a very healthy move - for herself and for Gladstone residents.
The recent city arrival, who has been in the field for more than 20 years, is Gladstone Hospital Emergency Department's first nurse practitioner.
Her appointment means patients waiting at the city's emergency department will get treatment sooner.
Ms Bower has moved to Gladstone from the bustling Gympie Hospital.
Nurse practitioners are able to undertake some of the roles of doctors, including ordering health services including x-rays, prescribe medications and refer patients to specialists.
Ms Bower said she was excited to be the city's first emergency nurse practitioner
"I moved to Gladstone because it gave me the opportunity to practise as a nurse practitioner, and there's a lot of scope for growth - not only within the Emergency Department, but within the profession," she said.
"There are more opportunities for me being able to grow as a person as well as a nurse practitioner."
Ms Bower will work with the medical and nursing team at he hospital. She said her role would lead to shorter waiting times for patients.
"It will be great to be able to provide a service," she said.
"Everybody hates waiting, and nurse practitioners provide a great service to patients, but they also help the doctors by taking extra pressure off them.
"Nursing is a career that has so many opportunities and diverse scopes of practice, it allows you to continually update your skills and knowledge to ensure patients are receiving the best possible care."
Nurse practitioners are highly skilled professionals who complete a master's qualification before gaining registration.