Nurses and midwives who work in rural or remote locations can often work in excess of full-time hours, perform multiple roles for which they may be trained but are not necessarily experienced, and may be on-call 24 hours a day, for many weeks at a time.
They often work alone or in two-nurse posts, and are responsible for a large number of patients. They are more likely than their metropolitan colleagues to experience multiple traumatic events, with little time to recover from one before another occurs. They may live and work in the same building, and this housing may be inadequate. To access support, clinically or professionally, they usually have to travel great distances.