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South Africa is Not Prepared for the Coronavirus – Nurses’ Union - News - Nurses Arena Forum

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South Africa is Not Prepared for the Coronavirus – Nurses’ Union by Idowu Olabode : March 09, 2020, 03:54:46 PM
The Young Nurses Indaba Trade Union has questioned Health Minister Zweli Mkhize’s call for the country not to panic over the coronavirus, saying that nurses and other healthcare workers have not been adequately trained to deal with it.

Lerato Madumo-Gova, who is the union president, said the minister was being economical with the truth when he told community members in Pietermaritzburg yesterday, where the virus was detected, that the country had competent healthcare workers to deal with the virus.

“We are aware that nurses have not been adequately trained in dealing with coronavirus, since this virus was never part of any nursing curriculum,” said Madumo-Gova.

She said government had to come clean and admit that South African healthcare workers were not adequately prepared for this outbreak.

“Every nurse and any healthcare professional employed by the public healthcare sector in South Africa knows that besides our overcrowded hospitals, our units have few to no isolation cubicles. Shortage of material and human resources is our everyday nightmare,” she said.

Madumo-Gova said the country was in more danger than the minister and the department were prepared to divulge.

“If a person could enter the country through the airport where there are stringent protocols and screenings in place and still manage to pass undetected, what about our inadequate borders?” she asked.

The union said it was very concerned about the shortage of N95 masks in health facilities and the wellbeing of rural communities who did not have running water.

“We are also concerned about the thermo detectors as the virus in the first few days can lay dormant with no sign of temperature increases, making the individual able to pass through undetected,” she explained.

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