May 26, 2013 | 04:20 AM (BD Time)
26 May, 2013 Sunday
Upholding nursing as a noble profession
Dr Anisur Rahman Forazy:
Like many countries in the world, Bangladesh is facing an acute crisis of skilled nurses. Although nurses are the essential part of healthcare system, there are very little initiatives to promote this noble profession. Thousands of patients are not getting proper medical care due to deficiency of skilled nurse. With proper attention and suitable programme, we can help revive the profession.
In Bangladesh nursing is considered as a second segmental job. That is why the work value and social recognition does not encourage the brilliant boys and girls to join the profession. It creates an ill impression and contributes as one of the major causes of shortage. In order to increase the number of nurse and fulfill the actual need both government and private sector should come forward with the initiative to open more nursing institutes, colleges to attract new generation to join in nursing.
There is also urgent need to uphold the significance of this noble profession. Among other barriers - negative social attitudes and more restricted policies, undefined status of nurses, lack of appreciations, cultural barriers and lack of financial supports for nursing education are also the central factors behind the shortage of nurses.
According to Bangladesh Health Watch report in 2007(Health workforce), an estimated 2,80,000 nurses are required immediately to meet the work force of local health centers in Bangladesh. However, the Institutional capacities of nursing in Bangladesh are not designed appropriately. Professional training was adopted in domestic environment.
There are lack of infrastructural and quality teaching in nursing colleges or institutes. Besides these, the private initiators are not encouraged to open more nursing academy (institute or colleges). These types of barriers are obstacles to produce more qualified nurses. There is urgent need to take a dynamic dimension to produce sufficient nurses to meet the demand of the country as well as to earn the remittance by migrating qualified nurses to abroad.
The government should give proper attention to nursing sector as it is one of the beneficial sectors of healthcare system of the country. The proper co-operation may be extended to private nursing colleges open for more international and local students.
A special programme like Masters in Clinical or Advanced nursing may be incorporated into academic field for preparing sufficient teacher and highly skilled manpower. Moreover, social negative perspective regarding nursing service should be changed to uphold nursing as a first segment service and noble profession.
Nursing is stereotyped with women as per finding of Bacon and Mckendrick's 2000. it recommended that stereotypical images of nurses to be changed encouraging more men, can build up nursing as a strong professional body.
Further, traditional nursing uniform may be changed by providing a smart and tidy uniform in respect of culture from the state licensing authority. In order to encourage new generation to undertake nursing education, an educational and marketing campaign can be arranged through media.
(The writer is Principal of Begum Rabeya Khatun Chowdhury Nursing College, Sylhet.)
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