What’s your name and where do you work?

My name is Kylie Louise Whatley. I am the Clinical Care Specialist Manager for the Northern region, leading a team of clinical care specialists in supporting homes across QLD/NSW/NT.

How did you start your nursing career?

I started at a very young age – I even got my first nurses kit when I was in grade 3! I commenced as a nursing student at Rockhampton Base Hospital, in June 1989. We were the last group of hospital-trained nurses in Queensland and I officially graduated in September 1992. We celebrated our 30-year reunion in September 2019 and were lucky to have a ‘tour’ of the now-closed hospital wings and nursing quarters – it really brought back some interesting memories!


Describe your role in one sentence?

Sharing my caring passion and mentoring nurses at the beginning of their journey in aged care.

What attracted you to work as a nurse in aged care?

While working in the UK as a Registered Nurse, there were restrictions on what you were allowed to do as an agency nurse in hospitals. This frustrated me to no end, so I started taking shifts in residential care homes. I found that I absolutely loved the residents, and was successful in a ‘Director of Nursing’ role close to where we were living in Chichester, West Sussex. On return to Australia, I pursued a similar role and landed a Clinical Manager position in a private home. They were still in the building phase and I assisted in sourcing everything, from the kitchen pots and pans, furnishings, to writing our policies and hiring new staff.

What motivates you to wake up and go to work?

Being able to create a positive impact on the lives of residents. It’s the simple things, like making a resident smile and making them feel valued about being part of the community within the home.

What do you like about working at Regis?

I reached my 20 years with Regis in 2019 and am thankful for the opportunities that Regis has created for me through my journey. I love my team and my work colleagues and I have built some strong friendships along the journey which keeps me happy.

How do our residents benefit from your role?

By leading by example and coaching our nurses to be passionate and caring – this, in turn, ensures our residents are treated with passion and respect.

What do you like about being a nurse?

I’m proud to be a nurse and have the ability to help people which compliments my caring and compassionate nature.

What advice do you have for people considering a career as an aged care nurse?

Be proud of who you are and what you have to offer. It’s a tough job, but can be so rewarding in many ways.

How has your role adapted since the COVID-19 pandemic?

The biggest impact was not being able to be in a home to work alongside the clinical teams personally. It was wonderful when I was able to resume being onsite again and being welcomed back by the clinical teams was heartfelt.

Do you have any daily rituals you live by to maintain your mental and physical health?

I try to walk when I can but this can easily fall flat with regular travel and I seem to find every excuse under the sun. But I do choose healthy options in my diet and rarely eat fast food or sugary foods, topped off with a scotch in the evening.

What does ‘Home’ mean to you?

In my garden with my family, my dog, and our 6 chickens.