A new challenge: from a COVID-19 ward to a first-of-its-kind dedicated heart hospital

Radhika John stands smiling in front of a patient room in the Victorian Heart Hospital. She wears navy scrubs, black glasses and wears her black hair in a top bun.

Nurse Manager Radhika John is no stranger to new challenges. 

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, she took a leap of faith and stepped up into a Nurse Manager at one of our dedicated COVID-19 wards. 

Prior to this, she started her adventure in healthcare as an international student and has been advancing her career at Monash Health ever since. 

She completed the Transition to Specialty Practise and Cardiac Care, offered by Monash Health, which is a program that gave her the foundations and exposure to Cardiac Nursing. 

Her last rotation in the 32 South Ward, the Cardiothoracic Ward, is where she found her niche in nursing and has never looked back – encouraging her to go on to complete her Postgraduate Degree in Cardiac Care and her Master’s Degree at Deakin University. 

In the spirit of continued growth, Radhika said she was ready for her newest challenge and has been appointed as the Nurse Manager of Acute Cardiac Care at the new Victorian Heart Hospital (VHH). 

“I’m a surgical nurse by heart, and the desire for me to go to the VHH is that it will be the first ever hospital dedicated to heart health,” she said. 

“Having a medical institution that places sole emphasis on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of heart disease and cardiovascular conditions is simply amazing. 

“It’s kind of a personal challenge for me – starting afresh and transitioning into a brand-new building and simultaneously building a team that will share a common passion for cardiac health and Cardiac Nursing.” 

Radhika said within this scope, one of her personal passions was consumer engagement and she hoped to continue to grow this space in her new role. 

“I want to see how we can effectively engage with our consumers and empower them to collaborate with our multidisciplinary team to improve their healthcare outcomes, and most importantly, their hospital journey,” she said. 

“It’s been a very long journey; my staff have been resilient and willing to adapt to everything that was sent their way and have held strong throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. They are simply the best group of nurses to work with,” she said. 

The new Nurse Manager said investing in every staff member and assisting them to perform at their peak was the “end goal” of her career. 

“I feel like it will be a new generation of employees coming through our doors,” Radhika said. 

“They will bring new experiences, values, ideas and aspirations that I look forward to hearing and investing in our nursing practise.” 

For those thinking of joining Radhika in the Acute Cardiac Care Ward at the VHH, she offered the below advice. 

“If you are passionate about heart health and Cardiac Nursing, want to work with state-of-the-art technology with an incredible group of nurses and educators, then the Acute Cardiac Care Ward at the VHH is the place for you!”. 

Radhika said she could not be more thankful to the phenomenal mentors who have helped guide her career – and can’t wait to do the same for her new team. 

Roles at the Victorian Heart Hospital are closing soon. To grow your career at Australia’s first dedicated cardiac hospital, visit our careers website and apply today!