Nurses urged to do more to improve health sector’s image

Nurses in the country have been called upon to always endeavour to deliver best services and uphold professionalism in their work.
Students of the College of Medicine and Health Sciences during a play on family planning on the International Nurses' Day in Kigali, yesterday. (D. Umutesi)
Students of the College of Medicine and Health Sciences during a play on family planning on the International Nurses' Day in Kigali, yesterday. (D. Umutesi)

Nurses in the country have been called upon to always endeavour to deliver best services and uphold professionalism in their work.

Prof. Phil Cotton, the Principal of University of Rwanda’s College of Medicine and Health Sciences, made the remarks yesterday during celebrations to mark the International Nurses’ Day at the College’s School of Nursing and Midwifery in Kigali.

‘‘You should change the bad reputation of hospitals that they are a dangerous place to be for patients,’’ Prof. Phil Cotton told the nurses.

He, however, lamented that the health workforce is too often considered as drainage of the hospital budget.

“Unfortunately, nurses are considered as an unnecessary part of the health care system. They are the first to be cut off in times of financial crisis and frequently don’t have the necessary trainings to do their work,” he said.

Prof. Cotton urged the nurses to keep in mind that they are the advocates for patients.

The event was marked by poems and plays on the impact of nurses in promoting family planning and provision of healthcare.

The Dean of School of Nursing and Midwifery, Dr, Donatilla Mukamana, called on the public to respect the often underrated profession(nursing), saying it is crucial in the health care system.

“If a person saves a life, he is called a hero. If a person saves many lives, he is called a nurse.

Nurses are care givers and the ones that follow-up the patient from the moment they reach a health centre until they leave,”Dr Mukamana added.

She also called on nurses to ensure good service delivery and urged lecturers to act as an inspiration to their students.

Day of nurses

International Nurses’ Day is celebrated on the birthday of a British nurse Florence Nightingale, who is regarded as the founder of modern nursing for her work during the Crimean War.

Julie Kimonyo, the registrar at the National Council of Nurses, commended nurses’ role.

“They also have to give the best and cost-effective care in order to support health schemes in the country such as Mutuelle de Santé,” she said.

She noted that the celebration is also an opportunity to ‘reconnect and evaluate their status as nurses as well as change-makers.’

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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