MESSAGE FROM THE SOUTH AFRICAN NURSING COUNCIL
The 12th of May is a day when nurses globally reflect on and celebrate the meaning and value of their contribution in the health care delivery. The theme for the 2015 International Nurses day is:
Nurses: A Force for Change, care effective, cost effective.
The function of the nursing profession is predominantly caring rather than cure. This function includes prevention of disease and promotion of health, care of the sick including rehabilitation to ensure quality of life to those who are affected already. This function can contribute enormously to cost containment as the old saying that “prevention is better than cure” thereby reducing the burden of disease that is haunting our health care system. The recent budget speech by the Honourable Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, has emphasized prevention of diseases and promotion of health as central to the 2015/16 budget to strengthen our health care system. It stands to reason therefore that nurses have to lead the health care delivery this year through efficient service delivery, effective management, effective health workforce and the value of nursing. The foundation has been laid through the primary health care approach adopted by the country and recently the primary health care re-engineering with nurses forming the predominant workforce. Let us, therefore as nurses, claim our caring and cost effective position while carrying the burden of our health care system through task shifting. All these are actually articulated in the Strategic Plan for Nurse Education, Training and Practice which was launched in 2013 conceived from the nursing summit which was attended overwhelmingly by nurses.
The South African Nursing Council pay tribute to Nurses and Midwives at all health care settings who are providing the much needed quality care to the health care users, sometimes under very difficult circumstances. It is unfortunate however, that the good is often masked by the bad. Therefore let us reflect on the quality of nursing. We are attacked from all angles about the quality of nursing provided in recent times. Are we still proud of our profession? Do we still make time to reflect on the values guiding the nursing profession in education and practice? Are we cognizant of the immense responsibility of people’s lives that nurses bear? Please consult the Code of Ethics for Nursing in South Africa on our website http://www.sanc.co.za/professional_practice.htm.
Prof BR Bhengu
For more information, contact Mr. Sihle Mafambane (Communications Officer) on:
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