The Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA) has called on the government to as a matter of urgency halt the re-introduction of the Community Health Workers (zoom Nurses).
This comes after the Association’s attention was drawn to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the Ghana Health Service (GHS) and the Youth Employment Agency (YEA) for the re-introduction of the modular six months training of Community Health Workers (zoom Nurses).
In a statement jointly signed by Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo, President and David Tenkorang -Twum General Secretary of GRNMA, the Association said there were unemployed nurses and midwives of all categories (Certificate, Diploma and Degree holders), privately and publicly trained, numbering around fourteen thousand, who are awaiting government employment.
“Instead of committing new funds to train Community Health Workers (zoom Nurses), those funds should be channelled into the issuance of Financial Clearance to absorb those awaiting employment who have the requisite skill and knowledge to help the country in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
It further called on stakeholders and the public to desist from attaching the name “nurse” to any undertrained person who attains a six-month training or less and parades himself or herself as a nurse.
The statement said nursing is a noble profession and it took a required period of theoretical training and practice as stipulated by the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Ghana to become a Nurse.
The GRNMA, in its statement, said it was very unhappy about the constant effort of stakeholders, including successive governments, to adulterate the nursing profession.
The statement said the International Council of Nurses defined a nurse as a person who had completed a programme of basic, generalized nursing education and is authorized by the appropriate regulatory authority to practice nursing in a country.
It said basic nursing education was a formally recognized programme of study providing a broad and sound foundation in the behavioural, life, and nursing sciences for the general practice of nursing, for a leadership role, and for post-basic education for speciality or advanced nursing practice.
The statement said a nurse was prepared and authorized to engage in the general scope of nursing practice, including the promotion of health, prevention of illness.
A nurse is authorized to care for physically, mentally challenged and disabled people of all ages and in all health care and other community settings and also carry out health care Teaching and participate fully as a member of the health care team.
It further stated that a nurse had the mandate to supervise and train nursing and health care workers and auxiliaries and to be involved in research.
The statement further called on all and sundry to adhere to the COVID -19 protocols, especially the wearing of Face mask, social distancing and constantly sanitizing hands to curtail the spread of the virus.