Suzette Poole

Clinical lead, co-editor of Handover mental health and addiction nursing newsletter

(RN-MH, PG. Cert in Supervision, PGDip. Forensic Psych., MN)

Kia ora

I was born in Pahiatua and now reside in Te Awamutu. My parents were of English descent. He Māori aku tamariki. Ko Shannon, ko Phillip, Ko Nastassjia and Ko Talitha Te Huia. Nō pare te kawa- Ngāti Maniapoto rāua. He tokomaha aku mokopuna. Ko Suzette au.

My role involves leading projects and providing a mental health nursing perspective to others. It is a unique national workforce development role that provides me with opportunities to work alongside leaders, managers and nurses supporting people with their recovery. I thrive on the variety of the work that I am able to do which includes developing resources.

My career in mental health spans over 30 years beginning in 1980 at Tokanui Hospital. I qualified as a psychiatric nurse in 1985. My speciality was forensic mental health and over the last few years, I have been working on a project to improve services for women in secure care. Leadership roles included: clinical nurse leader-educator, clinical nurse director (Waikato DHB), nurse advisor-health (NZ Nursing Council).

My Master of Nursing thesis was about New Zealand Mental Health Nurses' Perceptions of Structural and Psychological Empowerment (2015) and contributed to a New Zealand study about violence towards nurses in their first year of practice (Mc Kenna et al., 2003).

Book publication contributions include:  

  • Hidden in Front of Us (2010) 
  • Changing Times, Changing Places: From Tokanui Hospital to Mental Health Services in the Waikato, 1910-2012 (2012)
  • Workforce Development Theory and Practice in the Mental Health Sector (2016).

Current projects