Plan to improve nursing in SA

A three-day national nursing summit has developed a plan of action to improve the profession, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said on Thursday.

He said his concern would now be to ensure the implementation of the plan called the “Nursing Compact and Roadmap”.

In a document titled “The Final Compact”, the nursing sector, which had gathered in Sandton since Tuesday, said it recognised that it was the engine of an effective health system and played an important role in service delivery.

It reaffirmed that the re-engineering of the healthcare system must drive the focusing of service delivery and developments in the nursing profession within the District Health System.

This would be based on multi-disciplinary teams of clinically competent professionals, community ward-based and the effective implementation of the national school-based primary health care system led by nurses.


The sector further urged the Department of Health to establish a task team that would develop and implement a comprehensive national policy on nursing education and training that would examine the new nursing qualifications framework.

The task team would also look into student status, funding models, positioning of public and private nursing education, and norms and standards for nursing and specialised skills.

In a bid to produce clinically competent nurses, the sector asked the Department of Health to develop, implement and allocate adequate resources for a national nursing educator and nurse manager development programme.

They further called for a review of the occupation specific dispensation (OSD) and other financial incentives for all categories of nurses and ensure alignment of remuneration with other health professionals in health care.

The sector said an urgent establishment of dedicated structures to deal with nursing issues at national, provincial and district levels with executive decision-making powers was needed.

Motsoaledi’s department was also urged to prioritise the creation of a conducive environment for student learning.

The sector requested that standardised white uniforms be issued to nurses in both the public and private sectors to enhance hygiene.

Also on the list of the Compact plan was the call for the Department of Health to give urgent attention to the revitalisation of nursing education institutions, accommodation and clinical facilities.

The Compact raised concerns around staffing norms, funding and filling of vacant nursing posts as well as management of moonlighting in the nursing sector.

Also on the nursing sector’s list of concerns was the negative image and their position in the community.

In a bid to restore the image of the profession, the sector included the Nurses’ Pledge in the Compact which read that the health of patients will be their first consideration and that they will “maintain the utmost respect for human life”.

Motsoaledi said capital resources to resolve most of the issues, including infrastructure related concerns stated in the Compact, were available.

He, however, said the issues of student stipends and new uniforms for nurses were still to be discussed and allocated budgets.

“The whole country will be watching us very closely to see if we translate our statements and commitments into reality.

“Failing them is not an option,” Motsoaledi said.

“It is crucial and highly symbolic that this compact and roadmap is adopted on the day we join the rest of the world in marking World Health Day today [April 7],” he said.

Motsoaledi said access to quality healthcare was a universal right “and we are glad that in marking this important day we are also able to say to South Africans we are committing ourselves to improving the way in which we deliver healthcare”.

He also pledged that his department’s leadership, including provinces, would spare no effort in ensuring that they implemented the outcomes of the summit and worked together with the nursing sector “to restore the dignity of the nursing profession”. — Sapa

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Johannesburg
Guest Author

Related stories

Covid-19 sets HIV treatment and testing back

Fewer people are getting tested for HIV than last year. People are also battling to access chronic medication. These are some of the lasting effects of the lockdown and the coronavirus pandemic

The Portfolio: Levy Pooe

Artist Levy Pooe conceptualises his work as ‘a social diary of being black in the city’

The Portfolio: Global Africa Lab

A project by Global Africa Lab explores the future of Black neighbourhoods affected by gentrification in New York City

Cabinet reshuffle rumours: Unlikely to happen any time soon, but…

Persistent rumours of a cabinet reshuffle may be jumping the gun, but they do reflect the political realignment taking place within the ANC

‘We spread the virus knowingly at this hospital’ ― healthcare workers at Thelle Mogoerane

Doctors at one of the biggest provincial hospitals in Gauteng say they are being forced to attend to patients without PPE, as the number of healthcare workers infected increases

Early-morning exercise: Jo’burg’s three golden hours

Under level four of the Covid-19 lockdown, the hours from 6am to 9am became the time when inner-city residents could use local parks to escape the nightmare around them
Advertising

Subscribers only

SAA bailout raises more questions

As the government continues to grapple with the troubles facing the airline, it would do well to keep on eye on the impending Denel implosion

ANC’s rogue deployees revealed

Despite 6 300 ANC cadres working in government, the party’s integrity committee has done little to deal with its accused members

More top stories

It’s not a ‘second wave’: Covid resurges because safety measures...

A simple model shows how complacency in South Africa will cause the number of infections to go on an upward trend again

Unisa shortlists two candidates for the vice-chancellor job

The outgoing vice-chancellor’s term has been extended to April to allow for a smooth hand-over

How US foreign policy under Donald Trump has affected Africa

Lesotho has been used as a microcosm in this article to reflect how the foreign policy has affected Africa

Trouble brewing for Kenya’s coffee growers

Kenyan farmers say theft of their crop is endemic – and they suspect collusion
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday