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* News / Address Delivered By NANNM President at the 2018 Nurses’ Week Celebration by katty: May 11, 2018, 11:42:43 PM


It is with great pleasure that I welcome you all from the length and breadth of the country to Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, on the occasion of this year’s commemoration of the International Nurses Day with the theme; “Nurses A voice to lead: Health is a human right” and International Day of the Midwife with the theme; “Midwives: leading with quality care”. The International Council of Nurses started commemorating this day since 1965. The annual celebration acknowledges the contributions nurses make to societies around the globe, as well as observing the birthday of one of the world’s most famous nurses, Florence Nightingale, born in Italy on May 12, 1820. The nurses’ week is also about honoring the unmatched dedication and service of all nurses and ensuring that the attention of government and policy makers at all levels is drawn to issues that matter most to nurses in their respective countries.

I therefore want to congratulate Nigerian nurses and midwives indeed across the globe on this year’s event. I want to also salute our courage and commitment for our unique, selfless and unparalleled contributions to the health sector despite the magnitude of the challenges we are being confronted with. Like Bill Gates noted during his visit to our country that Nigeria is one of the worst places to give birth, I dare add that Nigeria is one of the worst places to practice as a nurse or midwives. This year’s event is historic because 2018 marks the 40th anniversary of the famous Alma Ata declaration on health in 1978 which expressed the need for urgent action by governments, all health and development workers and indeed the global community to protect and promote the health of all people. It is however not encouraging that 40 years later governments and people still need to be reminded and sometimes coerced to see health as something that deserves utmost attention. During this period, the Nigerian health indices started nose-diving, groaning and suffering under bad management.

Forty years after the Alma Ata declaration, it is imperative that we scrutinize and x-ray our health system in Nigeria because 40 is a landmark age in a person’s life and in order not to be guilty of the maxim “a fool at forty”. The pertinent questions to be asked about the healthcare sector in Nigeria remain, one, “have we achieved anything in regards to the Alma Ata declaration?” Two “is there anything worth celebrating as achievement in terms of protecting and promoting the people’s health”? With a ranking that dropped from 4th in commonwealth nations to that of 187 out 190 health systems in the world, we need no prompt to recognize that Nigeria’s healthcare system is lagging behind and the reasons are not far-fetched from mismanagement, insecurity and inattention to the plight of nurses and other health workers. Health workers most especially nurses have not been receiving commensurate attention from the government and their welfare is being neglected. Aside this, I bring god tidings and wish to congratulate all nurses and midwives in Nigeria for the birth of the most populous professional association cum trade union that clocks 40 years in 2018.

Back to the themes for this year’s celebration, “Nurses a voice to lead: Health is a human right”, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) to which NANNM is an affiliate has expressed the belief that health is a human right and is at the forefront of advocating for access to health noting that nurses are the key to delivering it. All over the world, there are individuals and communities who are suffering from illness due to a lack of accessible and affordable health care. We however must also remember that the right to health applies to nurses as well! We know that improved quality and safety for patients depends on positive working environments for staff. That means the right to a safe working environment, adequate remuneration, and access to resources, and education. We must add to this the right to be heard and have a voice in decision making and policy development implementation! For nurses and midwives, Health is a Human Right means that all humans have the right to access affordable, safe and quality health care at a time when they need it most. And there are nurses and midwives working in everyday health care settings and in positions of influence and decision making that are doing this right now. Governments must continue to empower them as the form the foundation of a truly functional health system. The theme for this year’s international Day of the Midwife is “Midwives leading the way with quality care” resonates with the first of ICM’s three strategic directions viz quality, equity, and leadership. This theme is significant as it highlights the vital role that midwives play not only in ensuring women and their newborns navigate pregnancy and childbirth safely, but also receive respectful and well-resourced maternity care that can create a lifetime of good health and wellbeing beyond the childbirth continuum. The quality of a midwife’s care is of paramount importance. Midwives who are educated, trained, licensed, and regulated to ICM standards work beyond the parameters of just one situation, one setting, one community or one country: they are able to lead the way towards improved maternal and newborn health outcomes locally, nationally and globally. As nurses and midwives, we know that leading with quality care means providing evidence-based and people-centred reproductive health services and this is a privilege that will gladly bear despite the numerous challenges we face.

Central to the human right nature of health is the achievement of Universal Health Coverage which encompasses not only availability and accessibility but also affordable quality health care services. Nurses and midwives have once again been proven to be indispensable in this regards. This is evidenced by the assertion of the Director General of the World Health Organization, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, that achieving Universal Health Coverage and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) will remain a mirage if the nursing and midwifery workforce are not brought back into the midstream of health care services, policy formulation and execution. The International Council of Midwives {ICM} have noted that if adequately empowered, the training and services of midwives are enough to provide 70% needed health care services to the women of child bearing age, ante natal, natal, post-natal and childhood care. It is not only enough for healthcare services to be available, it is of paramount importance also that the services being provided are of maximum quality. This is why the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives {NANNM} is calling on the government, professionals and indeed all stakeholders to join us in the fight against quackery which is bedeviling our nation. The menace of quackery portends great danger to our health care system which is deadlier than effects of all kinds of viral hemorrhagic fever combined. This fight against quackery should not be left for the professionals alone but all stakeholders and indeed the entire society must join hands with the practitioners to combat it so that we can be rest assured that only quality health care services are obtainable in our health care system. All hands must be on deck like it was done when we fought the scourge of Ebola disease and Lassa fever. The process of health facility classification, task sharing, shifting must take notice of professional ethics, standards of practices, professional jurisdiction and safety of life.

Another danger for our health care system is the recent clamour in certain quarters for privatization of certain services in the health sector. Let me be quick to point out that the proponents of this idea are clamouring for such for certain selfish and parochial interests. The implementation of the PPP initiative in Nigeria has been maneuvered to be a means of putting the public wealth of the majority into the private pockets of the few elites. A PPP arrangement that does not ensure better accessibility, improved quality and most importantly affordability is useless. If the cost of treating malaria under a PPP arrangement is not cheaper than what is obtainable in the public hospital, then the goal of PPP has failed. NANNM joins other stakeholders to condemn such move which is targeted at further impoverishing the citizenry under the guise of providing health care services. We must take a cue from the present state of the power sector in Nigeria.

Let me quickly point out another challenge that is making the upholding the human right to health difficult, the worsening security situation in Nigeria on a daily basis. The Nigerian health care delivery system have been affected by a rise in the experience of terrorism starting form militancy in the Niger Delta, Boko Haram in north, herdsmen/farmers clash all resulting to wanton killings and destruction. The situation is being made complex by the dimension of abduction of health workers in the hospitals, community health care centres and in the communities. This has created fear, anxiety and apprehension in the mind of the health professionals resulting a drastic reduction in their optimal level of functioning. This decreases accessibility to health care facilities, professional and quality health care services thereby heightening the risk of maternal and infant morbidity and mortality among our people. Let me use this medium to sound a note of warning to militants and others in armed struggle that they should desist because their struggles are not worth the lives of innocent Nigerians and further destruction of our health system. Our political elites should also be warned about their insatiable quest for power as their personal interests should not override the public interest of access to health as a human right.

On the ongoing JOHESU strike, it is a pity that this year’s nurses’ and midwives’ day celebrations are taking place when all the federal health institutions in Nigeria have been pushed to the wall to down tool and the health workers in the state and local government settings have been constrained to join them due to the failure of the government to do the needful even after 3 weeks. Let me quickly point out that this present strike action became inevitable as a result of the government’s insensitive disposition. It is most unfortunate that while other countries are counting their gains and achievements towards attaining universal health coverage, what the federal ministry of health in Nigeria is counting are the losses occasioned by the inevitable though very much avoidable strike. No patriotic Nigerian will visit any of our health institutions and observe their states today without shedding tears for our healthcare system. NANNM has a key stakeholder aligns with the struggle which is for justice and equity and NOT equality and advise the federal government to accede to the requests of the health workers without any further delay. The government and their representatives need to learn from a simple life principle that without justice, there cannot be peace and without peace, there cannot be growth and development.

We also want to condemn in the strongest of terms the unproductive approach being employed so far by the ministry of health in handling this crisis. Rather than simply implement agreements entered into willfully with JOHESU and obey court orders, the federal ministry of health has chosen to employ draconian measures targeted at frustrating and humiliating our members into jettisoning this just struggle. Such atrocious measures include churning out obnoxious circulars, intimidating our members with law enforcement agencies and peddling half-truths and pure falsehoods to blackmail us. The latest is the withholding of the April salaries of members who have worked dutifully until the early hours of the 18th day of the month before they were compelled to down tool as a result of the insensitive attitude of the government. The illegal withholding of legitimate salary is not known to the Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria {LFN}, as only an illegal strike attract implementation of CAP 432. Besides this, all employees that have worked for more than half of a month deserve their payment as enshrined in civil service regulations. We are not unaware that some people are self-promoted to management cadre during crises but the reality is that their punishment is they were not even paid for the period of time they worked in disobedience to their professional association directives. The fact is that these people are not recognized as top management staffs and are not usually involved in policy formulation except during crises of this nature. I pity emergency managers that will be reverted to their positions after the strike. Let it be made known loud and clear to the perpetrators of these evil machinations that their strategies have failed right from the point of conception. JOHESU members, having exercised due diligence and patience in the prosecution of this struggle, are resolute and determined to see this struggle to a logical conclusion. What we demand for is justice, fairness and equity, these are ideals we strongly believe in and if need be they are ideals for which we are prepared to die. Aluta Continua!!! Victoria Ascerta!!! We must drive home the point that until the philosophy that holds one race, creed, colour and indeed profession superior and holds another inferior is finally discredited and totally abandoned, the end result is war. The apartheid in the health sector must end now.

As a corporate citizen however, the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives {NANNM} will want to advise the government to look inwards and begin to take urgent steps that will restore the glory of our health sector. The Nigerian health sector needs to retrace her steps to identify the cause of the disharmony in the sector with a view to find lasting solutions. To start with, there is need for the government to declare a state of emergency in the health sector and call for an encompassing dialogue. It should be noted that the government have set up various committees to look into the health sector but with no visible solution in sight. We hereby call on the government to fast track the implementation of the 2008 Oronsanye job evaluation committee and the 2014 Yayale Ahmed presidential committee on disharmony in the public health sector.

Finally, there is no gainsaying that nurses and midwives are crucial to the attainment of universal health coverage, sustainable development goals and overall development of their nation’s economy. According to the immediate past president of ICN, Judith Shamian, “the wealth of our nations depends on the health of our populations, and the health of our populations depends on nursing”. Countries with effective and functional healthcare systems have only learnt to treat their nurses well. It is high time the Nigerian government borrowed leaf from them. We must learn how to treat nurses right and accord them the necessary respect and treatment they deserve otherwise Nigeria will only continue to train nurses for countries that value them to enjoy. On this note, the association {NANNM} is calling on the government to hastily attend to the following demands of nurses;

Urgent gazette of the unified scheme of service with the expectation that subsequent upon that, proper placement will be done for professional nurses and midwives like their counterparts.

Mass employment of nurses:
there is now an urgent need for the recruitment of more nurses and midwives into the public service, this will reduce work burden and burnouts that have consistently become a plague to nurses and midwives due to shortage of this skilled healthcare professionals in government healthcare facilities at all levels. This chronic shortage of manpower has caused a situation where the remaining few nurses are being overworked and stretched almost beyond their elastic limit. Under the present working conditions, productivity is affected and efficient service delivery is hindered. We have also noted the toll effect of the present service conditions on the health of our members who are fast becoming victims of ill health and untimely deaths.

Employment of nurse interns:
Internship is a prerequisite for professional development, capacity building and professional competency for graduates of nursing sciences. We call on the government to ensure that all health institutions to employ nurse interns. The Association wishes to sound a note of caution to Medical Directors and Chief Medical Directors who are hiding under the guise of “replacement of interns” thereby denying nurse interns the opportunity of undergoing the internship programme as approved by the National Council on Establishment {NCE}, adopted and accepted by the National Council on Health {NCH} and upheld by the Federal Ministry of Health {FMOH}. We advise these lot to refrain from any action or inaction that will undermine the full implementation of the internship programme for nurses.

Enhancement of the entry point for graduate nurses:
we wish to point out that nurses are being disenfranchised at their entry points into the civil service when compared with other health professional. In line with the IAP award of 1981 which was affirmed by the NICN in 2012 and 2014, nursing has been designated a profession sui generis and rated to be at par with pharmacy and medical laboratory science, however, graduates of nursing science are employed on CONHESS 7 while those of of pharmacy and medical laboratory science are employed on CONHESS 9. This injustice must stop. Permit me to also use this opportunity to note the ugly experience of MDAs and parastatal agencies churning out advertisements for nurses on ridiculous entry points such as CONHESS 6 and 7. It is pathetic to observe that at this age and time, some chief executives will be ignorant of the fact that nursing training is being offered in the universities for the period of seven {7} years. This is sheer demonstration of crass ignorance and administrative incompetence. The Association strongly frowns at this and notes that such CEOs and whoever in their establishment responsible for such obnoxious advertisements are not fit to remain in their offices. We urge the government and other stakeholders to redress this anomaly as the Association will not leave any stone unturned in fighting this injustice.

Adequate remuneration and motivation of nurses:
the deprivation of our members on CONHESS 7 and 8 teaching allowances, deprivation of nurses in primary health care allowances are both contributing to demotivation of willing and dedicated nurses and midwives. Nurses on NYSC scheme are not been treated like professionals in the manner with which they are being remunerated. This also requires urgent attention as it also worsens the brain drain of nurses being experienced by the country. Dr. Mahler, former DG of W.H.O notes that the training and recruitment of health workers is not enough but motivating, and retention of health workers is paramount at attaining the health goals worldwide.

Before I conclude, let me use this moment to congratulate in advance our students who will be concluding their final qualifying examination of the nursing and midwifery council of Nigeria. I wish them the best of luck and Godspeed in their future endeavours.

In concluding this address, I wish to appreciate our partners, sponsors in particular all executives and members including the education committee of the association who worked tirelessly to ensure the success of this event.

Long Live Nigerian Nurses!!!

Long Live Nursing Profession!!!

Long Live Federal Republic of Nigeria!!!

Thank you and God bless.
* News / #JOHESUStrike2018 JOHESU Strike Threatens Ebola Response In Nigeria by katty: May 11, 2018, 05:24:07 PM
Nigerian health workers’ unions on Friday threatened to withhold help for emergency measures against Ebola because of an ongoing strike over pay and conditions.

“The strike will go on as long as the government refuses to honour the existing agreement with us,” chairman of the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU), Biobelemoye Joy Josiah, told AFP.

The government this week ordered screening of travellers from the Democratic Republic of Congo and neighbouring countries after a fresh outbreak of the haemorrhagic fever there.

But Josiah said: “None of our members will be involved in any Ebola screening until the government does the needful.”

JOHESU comprises pharmacists, nurses, laboratory technologists and other paramedics in the public health sector, except doctors and dentists.

They walked out on April 18 over demands for pay parity with doctors and improved welfare.

The strike has paralysed services in federal government-owned hospitals and health centres.

On Wednesday, JOHESU extended the strike by directing its affiliates in Nigeria’s 36 states to join following deadlock in talks with the government.

Nigeria does not share a border with DR Congo but memories are still fresh of an Ebola outbreak in 2014 that killed seven people out of 19 confirmed cases.

The World Health Organization at the time praised the country’s response for containing the spread of the virus, which left some 11,000 people dead in wider West Africa.

The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) said relevant agencies, including the port health services, have been mobilised to ensure the safety of passengers and other users.

“All equipment and personnel used in combatting the virus in 2014 are still very much at the airports,” said FAAN spokeswoman Henrietta Yakubu.

“We have always had thermal scanners in our airports that monitor the temperature of passengers and capture their pictures. We still have hand sanitisers in our restrooms too.

“When passengers walk past the scanners, it registers their temperature. If yours is high, you are pulled aside for observation.”

* News / Nurses Donate Sanitary Pad, Drugs to Federal Government Girls College, Bwari by katty: May 11, 2018, 05:10:53 PM
Some nurses and midwives under the auspices of Igala Nurses and Midwives Association (INAMA) on Friday, donated sanitary pads and drugs to students of Federal Government Girls’ College, Bwari, Abuja.
Making the donation at the school, President of the association, Mrs Christie Awunor, said the gesture was a medical outreach organised by the nurses as part of activities to commemorate the International Nurses Week. Awunor said that the gift was aimed at encouraging the female students on the use of sanitary pads during their menstrual circles.

She said that about 61 per cent of young girls used dirty rags, tissue paper, ordinary paper as an alternative to pad during their menstrual period, and described such practice as unhealthy. According to her, such practice can expose them to urinary track and virginal infections and staphylococcus, among others.
Awunor, however, attributed the situation to financial constraints of some of the girls as a lot of them could not afford a sanitary pad. She stressed the need for the girls to adopt hygienic ways of handling their menstrual periods to avoid infections, which if not properly treated when contacted, could damage the fallopian tube and affect reproductive lives.

“Part of our yearly activities is to visit schools to give health talk, promote health and also prevention campaign as well as testing services for HIV, Family Planning, maternal and child health, among others. “The visit is aimed at educating them on menstrual hygiene and importance of sanitary pad as well as advocate for the school management to prioritise giving the children pad once monthly like they serve them lunch and dinner.
“Also, we educate them on drug abuse and its health implications, sex education to prevent them from illicit sex, falling prey to perpetrators of child abuse, molestation and other societal ills,” Awunor said. Awunor said that sexual abuse was a recurring trend across nooks and crannies of the country, and lamented that young girls, including infants, were being abused by their fathers, uncles and neighbours.
She said that the trend had continued because the children were ignorant of how to guide against such advances. The president advised the students to report to their mothers and teachers when their fathers or anybody made love advances toward them either by touching them on the breast and other vital parts. She identified some tricks normally used by the perpetrators to include offering to buy biscuit and some other valuables, which they felt the children could not afford.
“What we hear everyday are issues of rape and girls being molested even in communities, at home and we discovered that a lot of the girls cannot speak out because they are threatened.

“This is why we decided to channel this enlightenment to especially girls’ schools so that they can learn and report any misconduct to them,” she said. The association donated 500 packs of sanitary pads and drugs, which included Flagyl, Paracetamol, Boscupan, anti-Malaria for the school’s dispensary to ensure availability and easy access to such drugs when a child had challenge.
Receiving the items, Head Girl of the school, Miss Fatima Ibrahim, commended the association for gesture and said that it was a right step in the right direction.
Similarly, Mr Andrew Husseini, Vice Principal, Special Duties of the school, expressed gratitude of the management to the nurses, noting that the girls were ignorant of their sexualities and morality because of their ages.
Husseini said that the students were being given proper orientation, especially on sex education. “We do a lot of guidance and counselling, but this is even more practical as they are listening to the voices of professional nurses and midwives, which is an addendum to our own activities to reorient them toward their sexualities.
“It will help them a great deal and at the end the girls will be highly enlightened and know much better how to live their lives as young girls aiming at the future,” he said. On his part, Mrs Helen Wada, Founder of INAMA and the Head Nurse of the school, said that the Health Talk had helped to increase the knowledge of the students on personal hygiene.
Wada commended the association for the gesture, adding that she was honoured by the choice of FGGC, Bwari, by the association as beneficiary of its goodwill.
Vanguard News
* News / #Nursesweek MSF- Celebrating International Nurses Day by katty: May 11, 2018, 10:34:25 AM
“Being a nurse brings out the humanity in you”. These are the words of Philomena Obiefuna, a Nigerian nurse caring for malnourished children in the country’s conflict-ridden Borno state.

On International Nurses Day, (May 12th) MSF celebrates the work, dedication and passion of its 8,843 nurses saving lives around the world.

“Being a nurse brings out the humanity in you”. These are the words of Philomena Obiefuna, a Nigerian nurse caring for malnourished children in the country’s conflict-ridden Borno state. A sense of our shared humanity is something Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) tries to bring to every community it helps. Each day, our nurses make that possible.

From cholera outbreaks to extreme violence, from providing basic care in deprived and remote communities to helping those forced to flee their homes, it would be hard to find a medical activity where MSF’s nurses are not involved.

From cholera outbreaks to extreme violence, from providing basic care in deprived and remote communities to helping those forced to flee their homes, it would be hard to find a medical activity where MSF’s nurses are not involved.
It would be almost impossible to find any project where nurses are not on the frontline, delivering life-saving care to patients; every hour of every day.

Whether they scrub-in as nurse anaesthetists in an operating theatre, vaccinate thousands of children in one day, manage a hospital ward, travel hundreds of kilometres to help install a mobile clinic in an isolated community or triage people rescued from a sinking boat, MSF’s nurses are usually the first face a patient sees when in MSF’s care. Their expertise, talent and skills play a critical role in the treatment of our patients.

Despite MSF’s name, everyone who works for us knows that none of our activities – spread out over more than 70 countries – could carry on without the daily commitment, passion and skills of MSF’s 8,843 active nurses. One in five MSF employees is a nurse and an overwhelming majority (close to 90%) are local staff hired in the country where they work, providing care to their own communities.

Anyone who has spent time as a patient in a hospital will say that most of their daily interactions were with nurses. This is as true in the most deprived areas of South Sudan as it is in a private clinic in New York. MSF operations are no exception: whatever the needs of patients are, our nurses are there to care for them.

Anyone who has spent time as a patient in a hospital will say that most of their daily interactions were with nurses. This is as true in the most deprived areas of South Sudan as it is in a private clinic in New York. MSF operations are no exception: whatever the needs of patients are, our nurses are there to care for them. 
In MSF, nursing care means a patient-centred approach, where the way we treat and support a patient is adapted to suit their situation.

There is also the technical side of caring. Nurses do many clinical acts, including resuscitating patients, monitoring vital signs, cleaning and dressing wounds, administering pills and injections, inserting intravenous lines, providing vaccinations, and much more.

Despite working is some very difficult environments, MSF insists that care delivered should be evidence-based and of the highest possible quality. All the medical acts nurses perform can only be life-saving if they are performed well, at the right time and with the right equipment. In MSF, the expectation of high quality nursing care is supported by a number of guidelines, protocols and standard procedures to help them. But beyond these procedures, the expertise, talent and skills of nurses play a critical role in the treatment of patients.

“The skills of nurses often make the difference between life and death” explains Dr Sebastian Spencer, MSF’s Medical Director. “I will never forget that nurse in Central African Republic who taught me how to perform an intraosseous blood transfusion, basically how to inject blood directly into the marrow of the bone. We saved a child that Day in Paoua, but what I learnt from that nurse allowed me to save more lives and even to teach that technique to others. There’s a lot doctors can learn from nurses.”
Our nurses make a huge difference by helping patients to perform actions that they cannot easily do on their own. These include seemingly basic tasks like breathing normally, eating and drinking, eliminating body wastes, sleeping or resting, and maintaining body temperature within normal range. These all contribute to the patient’s recovery and to them regaining their autonomy as soon as possible.

Nurses are the ears that listen to patients’ stories, their fears and hopes. They are the shoulders to cry on when family members lose a loved one to injury or disease. They are counsellors when patients lose faith in their recovery. They are the desperately needed smile in a stressful situation. They simply care for people.

MSF would not be able to continue without nurses. If our doctors have no borders, our nurse definitely have no limits. The extraordinary work done by these professionals sometimes does not get the recognition it deserves, but anyone who has witnessed their daily commitment and passion can testify to the difference they make. Yet for MSF nurses, like so many nurses around the world, the best reward is probably the sometimes subtle one they get from their patients.

In the words of Michael Shek, a British nurse who has worked in both South Sudan and Syria, “In a lot of the places where MSF works, people literally have nothing, and being there and being able to alleviate their suffering, and seeing the smiles on their faces when they leave your facility is on one of the most joyful things you could ever see.”
Source : Hippocratic oath
* News / First To Die in Congo's Latest Ebola outbreak is a Registered Nurse by katty: May 11, 2018, 07:51:08 AM
The Democratic Republic of Congo's Ebola outbreak has killed a nurse, according to the Health Ministry.

Officials declared the outbreak in the country's northwest on Tuesday after lab tests confirmed the deadly virus in two cases from the town of Bikoro in the Equateur province.

The nurse died overnight at a hospital in nearby Ikoko Impenge, where four new suspected cases of Ebola have been reported, Health Minister Oly Ilunga said at a news conference. Seven people with a hemorrhagic fever, including two confirmed cases of Ebola, lay in hospital late Thursday, he added.

The patients could have links to a police officer in Bikoro who died after exhibiting symptoms of hemorrhagic fever in December, National Institute of Biological and Bacterial Research  director Jean Jacques Muyembe said. The officer's mother and 10 others then showed similar symptoms. Muyembe said officials would likely contain the outbreak.

Seventeen people have died from hemorrhagic fever in recent weeks, Ilunga said, and doctors are treating three more nurses for the symptoms. Officials must test nine patients for Ebola, just one virus responsible for such symptoms. Doctors have traveled to Bikoro to trace contacts, identify the epicenter and all affected villages, and provide resources.

A long history

Counting the current one, Congo has experienced nine outbreaks since researchers identified Ebola there in 1976. The country approved the use of an experimental vaccine during a flare-up almost exactly a year ago.

Without preventive measures, the virus can also spread quickly via bodily fluids from person to person and even to animals such as bats and monkeys. Ebola, which has no specific treatment, can prove fatal in up to 90 percent of cases.

None of the Ebola outbreaks in Congo have connections to the epidemic that began in 2013 and had left more than 28,600 people dead — almost all of them in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone — before it was declared over in 2016. However, an outbreak did leave 49 people dead in the Central African country that year.

On Thursday, Nigeria's immigration service announced that it had increased screening tests at airports and other entry points as a precautionary measure. Officials in Guinea and Gambia also said they had heightened screening measures along their borders to prevent the spread. Such efforts had helped to contain the virus during the West Africa epidemic.
Source : Deutsche News
* News / UNFPA, Saraki Advocate Better Working Condition For Nurses by katty: May 11, 2018, 07:40:59 AM
In order to reduce maternal and infant mortality in Nigeria, the United Nations Population Fund (UNPFA) and the wife of the Senate President, Toyin Saraki, have advocated improved working conditions for midwives in the Nigeria.

According to them, this would ensure that the prevalence rate of maternal and child mortality was reduced in the country.

They said this at a conference organised by the National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives, (NANNM) to commemorate the 2018 World Midwives Day in Abuja.

Speaking at the event, the UNFPA country representative, Dr. Diene Keita, said there were too many deaths among Nigeria women during childbirth, stating that there was need to provide enabling environment for midwives so that they can better serve the needs of expectant mothers and their families.

She said, “Today, we celebrate the heroic lifesaving work midwives do each day. There are far too many deaths among women trying to give birth in Nigeria. According to statistics, about 111 women die each day.

“Against that backdrop, we are advocating for radical policy framework on working conditions to ensure effective deployment and retention of well trained midwives in communities.

On her part, Saraki, who is the Global Ambassador for Midwifery Services, stated that the midwives can lead the way in quality care provision in the health sector especially at the grassroots, if they are given better working conditions.

According to her, “I wish we could go back to the time when we recruited, trained and equipped about 4,000 midwives before drafting them to rural areas. That move alone caused the rate of maternal and infant deaths to drop by 40 percent.”

“We must also highlight the women-sensitive care midwives provide in families towards preventing maternal and child deaths as well as disabilities by empowering mothers to make healthy and right choices which is key to the achievement of the SDGs by 2030,” she added.

Keita added, “To make this happen, I reiterate that we need to maintain highest global standards and promote enabling environment for midwives to serve the needs of women and their families.

Mrs Saraki added, “I believe that with the recruitment of more midwives, better training and improved working condition for them, we can go along way in reducing deaths among women during childbirth”.

Earlier, Comrade Abdulrafiu Adeniji, lamented the recent upward surge in the rate of maternal and child deaths in the country, blaming it on the ongoing strike by hospital workers.

He, therefore, called on the federal government to do the needful towards ensuring that the industrial action by Joint Health Workers Union (JOHESU) is called off.
Source : Independent Newspaper
* News / Nigerian Nurses, Midwives Call For Salary Harmonisation by katty: May 11, 2018, 07:34:36 AM
The National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM) has called for the harmonisation of salaries and better remuneration of nurses and midwives in the country to prevent migration of professionals.

Mrs Margaret Akinsola, Vice National Chairman NANNM-Midwives who made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) said that the harmonisation would ensure nurses and midwives in the rural areas at par with their counterparts in the state and federal payroll.

Akinsola was speaking at an occasion to commemorate the International Day of Midwife (IDM) on Wednesday in Abuja.

NAN reports that the day is commemorated on May 5 annually and has its 2018 theme as “Midwives: Leading the way to quality care”.

She pointed out that if those at the rural areas were remunerated accordingly with their counterparts at the federal and state levels, large number of professionals would prefer to work in the rural areas.

Akinsola also stressed the need to harmonise the salary of nurses and midwives across all tiers of government to prevent migration of professionals from rural areas to city centres.

She frowned at the disparity in remuneration between Federal, State and Local government staff, describing it as a contributing factor to the inadequacy of manpower at rural areas as well as the burden of maternal and newborn mortality rate in the country.

Akinsola, who decried the high mortality rate, explained that there was need to address the salient issues with regard to remuneration, lack of social amenities among others in the rural communities.

According to her, addressing these issues will ensure midwives and midwifery practice in the country achieve optimum result in reducing maternal and infant mortality.

“There should be harmonised remuneration irrespective of where you work; this will prevent migration from rural areas to urban areas.

“We want a salary structure where if you are in the Federal, state and local governments, you earn the same.

“We want a flat rate this will prevent migration from local areas to urban cities,” she said.

Akinsola noted that this year’s theme was geared toward highlighting the vital role midwives played in ensuring women and their newborns navigate pregnancy and childbirth safely.

“The dedication of midwives to women is renowned; they provide appropriate education, counseling and antenatal care for the woman and her baby.

“As midwives, we know that leading with quality care means providing evidence-based and people-centred reproductive health services,” Akinsola said.

* Articles / PAHO Calls On The Role of Nurses In Primary Health Care To Be Expanded by katty: May 11, 2018, 07:27:02 AM
More responsibility and autonomy for graduate primary health care nurses will lead to better access to quality care in vulnerable areas and areas with limited health care coverage

Expanding the role of graduate, primary health care nurses will improve access to health care, particularly in areas with limited numbers of health care professionals, reveals a new report from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), launched in the run-up to International Nurses Day on 12 May.

“If we are to meet the needs of an aging population and subsequent increase in the number of non-communicable diseases, we must expand the role of nurses, who make up the majority of the region’s health-care professionals,” said James Fitzgerald, Director of the Department of Health Systems and Services at PAHO.

The report - Expanding the Role of Nurses in Primary Health Care - reveals that nurses can play a crucial role in expanding access to primary health care, and in particular, in health promotion, disease prevention and care, without leaving anyone behind.

It is estimated that in the Americas region, around 800,000 additional health care professionals are required in order to meet current needs. The region also has an inadequate distribution of health care professionals, the majority of whom are concentrated primarily in urban areas with greater economic resources. In the United States, for example, there are 111.4 nurses for every 10,000 citizens, whereas in Haiti there are only 3.5. In half of the countries of the region, the average number of nurses per 10,000 citizens is 10.4 or fewer.

The PAHO report emphasizes that the implementation of new roles, such as Advanced Practice Nurses (APNs), would enable a broader range of primary health care responsibilities to be carried out in vulnerable parts of cities and in remote areas. This would contribute to better promotion of health, disease prevention and a reduction in mortalities.

In countries such as Australia, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland and Finland, nurses with four and five-year university degrees already carry out a broader range of responsibilities that enable them to meet patient needs.

The concept of APN’s or nurse practitioners (nurses authorized to make diagnoses, request examinations and issue prescriptions), began in Canada and the United States during the 1960s. These nurses practice as autonomous professionals, without supervision from a doctor, and can work within health care services or as independent practitioners.

In Latin America, there is still no regulation or training for APNs in primary health care, and issuing prescriptions, one of the central elements of this advanced practice, is still prohibited in many countries. Recently, however, Mexico passed a law to enable nurses to prescribe medication in the absence of a doctor, but only during an emergency.

Jamaica and Puerto Rico are the Caribbean countries with most developed training programs, regulation and professional integration of APNs.

The report also highlights Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Panama and Peru as countries with a high level of access to postgraduate nursing programs that could, in the future provide the training necessary for APNs.

These highly-trained nurses, with Masters and PhD-level degrees, would be able to carry out advanced duties in primary health care, as well as other activities such as diagnosis and medical treatment, all within the framework of the nursing practice model: prevention, awareness, holistic and patient-centered.

“Broadening the role of graduate nurses is not about substituting or replacing another professional, but about complementing other professionals while increasing efficiency, improving results and reducing cost,” said Silvia Cassiani, Advisor on Nursing and Allied Health Personnel at PAHO.

The report offers nine recommendations for expanding the role of advanced practice nurses in the Americas, and suggests that governments, professional associations, nursing schools, health institutes and other interested organizations debate, implement and broaden the role of nurses in line with the needs and context of each individual country.
Source :PAHO
* Free Nursing Books / Mitigating The Impacts And The Impediments To Quality Healthcare During Epidemic by katty: May 10, 2018, 11:17:21 PM
MITIGATING THE IMPACTS AND THE IMPEDIMENTS TO QUALITY HEALTHCARE DURING EPIDEMICS By Nurse Segun IGBINLADE Head, Dept of Nursing Science, Deputy Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences, National Open University of Nigeria Jabi-Abuja 2018 EDITION OF INTERNATIONAL NURSES WEEK (9TH MAY 2018)



—Risks of epidemics/pandemics —Impacts of epidemics/pandemics —Mitigation of epidemics/pandemics

—Identification of knowledge gaps in epidemics/pandemics

—Epidemics /Pandemics Preparedness and Intervention




Infectious diseases, which are among the leading causes of death worldwide, do not confine themselves to national borders. Their capacity to spread rapidly across geographies – jeopardizing social and economic security as well as challenging human health and well-being in an ever growing world population projected to be 9.7 Billion by 2050 is highly challenging.

A combination of high population density, poverty, changes in social structures, and a lack of public health infrastructure create progressively more favourable  conditions for communicable diseases. These are issues that require appropriate proactive preventive measures (Mitigation) to curb possible disease(s) outbreak and spread in a community (Epidemic) to prevent fast global spread (Pandemic).

Risks of epidemics/pandemics

Pandemics have occurred throughout history and appear to be increasing in frequency, particularly because of the increasing emergence of viral disease from animals.

Pandemic risk is driven by the combined effects of spark risk (where a pandemic is likely to arise) and spread risk (how likely it is to diffuse broadly through human populations).

Some geographic regions with high spark risk, including Central and West Africa, lag behind the rest of the globe in pandemic preparedness

Impacts of Epidemics/Pandemic

v• Pandemics can cause significant, widespread increases in morbidity and mortality and have disproportionately higher mortality impacts on LMICs.

v• Pandemics can cause economic damage through multiple channels, including short-term fiscal shocks and longer-term negative shocks to economic growth.

• Individual behavioral changes, such as fear-induced aversion to workplaces and other public gathering places, are a primary cause of negative shocks to economic growth during pandemics.

v• Some pandemic mitigation measures can cause significant social and economic disruption.

v• In countries with weak institutions and legacies of political instability, pandemics can increase political stresses and tensions. In these contexts, outbreak response measures such as quarantines have sparked violence and tension between states and citizens.


*Pathogens with pandemic potential vary widely in the resources, capacities, and strategies required for mitigation. However, there are also common prerequisites for effective preparedness and response.
*The most cost-effective strategies for increasing pandemic preparedness, especially in resource- constrained settings, consist of investing to strengthen core public health infrastructure, including water and sanitation systems; increasing situational awareness; and rapidly extinguishing sparks that could lead to pandemics.
*Once a pandemic has started, a coordinated response should be implemented focusing on maintenance of situational awareness, public health messaging, reduction of transmission, and care for and treatment of the ill.
*Successful contingency planning and response require surge capacity—the ability to scale up the delivery of health interventions proportionately for the severity of the event, the pathogen, and the population at risk.
*For many poorly prepared countries, surge capacity likely will be delivered by foreign aid providers. This is a tenable strategy during localized outbreaks, but global surge capacity has limits that likely will be reached during a full-scale global pandemic as higher capacity states focus on their own populations.
*Risk transfer mechanisms, such as risk pooling and sovereign-level catastrophe insurance, provide a viable option for managing pandemic risk.

Knowledge Gaps

Spending and costs specifically associated with pandemic preparedness and response efforts are poorly tracked.
There is no widely accepted, consistent methodology for estimating the economic impacts of pandemics.
Most data regarding the impacts of pandemics and the benefits and costs of mitigation measures come from high-income countries (HICs), leading to biases and potential blind spots regarding the risks, consequences, and optimal interventions specific to Low and middle-income countries (LMICs).
Epidemics /Pandemics Preparedness and Intervention

Pandemic preparedness and response interventions can be classified by their timing with respect to pandemic occurrence: the pre-pandemic period, the spark period, and the spread period, as shown in the box below.
Whereas some interventions clearly fall under the purview of a single authority, responsibility for implementing and scaling up many critical aspects of preparedness and response is spread across multiple authorities, which play complementary, interlocking, and, in some cases, overlapping roles. Essentially, the process include:

Processes involve in Epidemics /Pandemics Preparedness and Intervention

üSituational Awareness: an accurate, up-to-date view of potential or ongoing infectious disease threats

üPreventing and Extinguishing Pandemic Sparks

üRisk Communications: providing information that people can use to take protective and preventive action

üReducing Pandemic Spread:

Curtailing interactions between infected and uninfected populations
Reducing infectiousness of symptomatic patients • Reducing susceptibility of uninfected individuals
Processes involve in Epidemics /Pandemics Preparedness and Intervention

üCare and treatment to reduce the severity of Pandemic Illness

üPotential for Scaling Up: expansion of health intervention coverage

üRisk Transfer Mechanisms: offer of an additional tool to manage this risk e.g. Insurance facilities

üAdequate documentation and dissemination of data


In conclusion, public and private sectors need to collaborate and find a common ground viz a viz trust-based cooperating mechanisms at local and global levels to evolve standard preparedness and response strategies adaptable to all and given nation or community in handling issues about epidemics and pandemics.

These are achievable through religious employment of primary healthcare principles including:

Multi-sectoral approach • Appropriate technology • Focus on prevention
Equitable distribution
Community participation.

To download the full lecture click Here

* News / "We will Begin Indefinite Strike if You Increase JOHESU'S salaries"-NMA by katty: May 10, 2018, 09:31:13 PM
Nigerian doctors have threatened to withdraw their services across health institutions in the country if the federal government accedes to the demands of other health workers who have been on strike the past three weeks.

The strike by JOHESU( Joint Health Sector Union) has crippled healthcare delivery across the country, and has left millions without care.

The doctors, who are opposed to salary adjustment and harmonisation, one of the major demands of the striking health workers under JOHESU, said the warning became necessary as state and local government workers had been directed to join the JOHESU strike in a bid to force the government to act.

When the strike began on April 17, the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, in an apparent continuation of the rivalry among health workers, described JOHESU as an “illegal body” and urged the government to ignore its threat.

On Thursday, the NMA in a statement signed by its newly elected president, Francis Faduyile, said it reached an agreement with the government in 2014 not to accede to demands of other health workers relating to salary adjustments and harmonisation.

“The NMA wishes to draw the attention of the Federal Government to our correspondence of April 21, 2014 on the above, in which we reminded Government of the collective bargaining agreement we had with the Federal Government of Nigeria in January 2014.

“It is also pertinent to once again remind Government about the concluding part of our letter no. NMA/PRE/SG/03/0751 of 21st March 2014, which states, “In view of the above, the NMA painfully wishes to inform the Federal Government of Nigeria that any award to the non-medically qualified health professionals that violates the January and July agreements of 2014 shall result in the resumption of the suspended withdrawal of service of 2014. Please take this as a notice sir”.

“The above reminder is predicated on the extension of the ongoing strike action embarked upon by the amorphous body called ‘’JOHESU’’, to States and Local government areas, the basis of which is to strengthen its callous and ill motivated agitation for pay parity between her members and doctors with the resultant erosion of relativity and further hierarchical distortion in the health sector vis-à-vis her clandestine romance with some top government officials.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the Nigerian Medical Association wishes to restate her positions on the various demands of JOHESU:

“We oppose vehemently, any adjustment in CONHESS SALARY SCALE with resultant pay parity between doctors and healthcare professionals allied to medicine, and hereby reaffirm that relativity is sacrosanct,” the statement read in part.
Source : Premium Times

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