Cape Town - Groote Schuur Hospital’s Palm Court was the epicentre of celebrations, in honour of nurses.
The hospital paid special tribute to hundreds of nurses on International Nurses Day.
The day marks the birth of statistician and founder of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale, and is observed annually on May 12, recognising the remarkable role played by nurses in the health-care sector.
Aligned with this year’s theme: ‘Nurses: A Voice to Lead – Invest in Nursing and respect rights to secure global health’, Groote Schuur officially opened its Nursing Centre for Learning and Development.
In attendance was Health and Wellness MEC Nomafrench Mbombo, Health and Wellness Department head of department Dr Keith Cloete, and chief operations officer Dr Saadiq Kariem.
Groote Schuur nursing head Aghmat Mohammed has said the nursing centre will be a nursing and education centre catering for the learning needs of all categories of nursing staff.
“The aim of the centre is to provide high-quality education and training which is readily accessible and responsive to the needs of all members of the nursing team within the organisation, but also from without,” he said.
The facility will provide short courses by a multidisciplinary team, e-learning lab, offer basic life support training, compulsory nursing competency assessment, continuous professional development (CPD), ward simulation for teaching, nursing leadership and management development courses, annual nursing research day and basic research training, journal clubs and a structured orientation programme.
Guest speaker Lynettte Denny said by protecting, supporting and investing in the nursing profession, health systems worldwide would be strengthened.
“It is now so clear that investing in nursing to build a resilient, highly-qualified nursing workforce and by protecting nurses rights, we will ensure that health systems transform to meet the needs of individuals and communities, now and in the future.”
A moment of silence was held for the three people who were shot and killed at the New Somerset Hospital over the weekend.
The hospital’s operational manager, Sister Diane Seale, had risked her own safety at the weekend to calm down the gunman, who was also a patient. She had moved closer to hug the assailant, de-escalating the situation.
Nurse Zukiswa Moses, 25, and a Gugulethu resident said: “It’s a wonderful gesture, that we are acknowledged as nurses for how far we’ve come and the contribution that we do make to individuals’ lives or health in general.”
Moses said more job creation could make a dent in the nursing shortage, as there were a lot of nurses who were unemployed.