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Much is expected from our new batch of nurses

Much is  expected from our  new batch  of nurses
March 08
09:17 2018

There is a lot of expectation riding on new nursing graduates. The expectation is that they are not only making up the numbers but will help lift the standard of nursing care in the country. Attached to it is the expectation that they will make a difference in the maternity services also.

The standard of service depends on their personal conduct, knowledge, skills and commitment.

Personal conduct relates to how nurses greet and talk to patients as soon as they enter the door at hospitals or the maternity units.

It is common knowledge that some nurses have been rude to patients. That must stop and the new nurses need to know that kind of behaviour is unacceptable in this modern day and age.

Some if not all of the new nurses may end up in the maternity wings of our hospitals. They will learn by experience and on-going professional development  more knowledge and skills required to comply with safety procedures and guidelines.

We understand that nurses and midwives will only perform according to their training.  It has been suggested in this column before and we repeat it here on how important it is to start a parallel midwifery school.

This will be a direct entry programme where the students go straight into a specialist midwifery course, either a certificate or even a diploma at first, before a fully fledged degree programme later.

When it’s fully operational, it will fill the shortage of widwives, lift the standard of midwifery service in the country and reduce the number of  medical mishaps in the labour wards. Fiji can also become the midwifery hub of the region. Countries in the region can send their students here for studies. There is a great need for better qualified  specialist midwives in the region.

It is now time to build that capacity to position ourselves for the future. We can start dialogue with New Zealand, which has a world class midwifery training programme and service, to help set up the programme here. Many Year 13 students who  apply to the Fiji School of Nursing every year miss out because of limited places. The midwifery school would offer additional opportunities for a career in the medical and health service.

Minister for Health and Medical Services Rosy Akbar says the vision of the Ministry of Health is for a healthy population and this can only be achieved if we all work together. Speaking to the new nurses at the beginning of their internship workshop in Suva, she says nurses can “empower people to take ownership of their health, to assist people to achieve their full health potential by providing quality preventative, curative and rehabilitative services through a caring, sustainable healthcare system.”

Ms Akbar has highlighted the importance of nurses.

“Customers are concerned of how nurses are speaking to patients – very rude, abrupt, using harsh tones and sometimes very authoritative. Some nurses fail to take the time to provide proper information to patients or customers,” she says.

“Nurses must be reminded that they should not only be beautiful but they must also be receptive knowing that they are front liners in any health facility.

She is being frank and candid and nurses should take note.

Maika Bolatiki


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