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* News / Covid-19: PRC Extends License Renewal without CPD to Dec. 2021 for Nurses,Others by katty: May 29, 2020, 02:23:05 PM
Once more, Philippines Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) said that you may renew your license cards without full compliance of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirement until December 31, 2021.

PRC previously announced that their flexibility in accepting renewal applications for Professional Identification Card (PIC) with no or incomplete CPD units will only be until December 2020. Professionals only need to sign and Undertaking embedded in the renewal form that they will comply in the next period.



But in Resolution No. 1240 issued May 15, PRC extends the acceptance of Undertaking for the renewal of license cards until the last day of next year. The Commission also posted the following on their official website:

CPD NOTICE​: Professionals who are unable to comply with the required CPD credit units are ALLOWED to renew their Professional Identification Card (PIC) upon execution of an undertaking to complete the required CPD credit units for the next compliance period. This undertaking can be availed until December 31, 2021. For information and guidance.

CPD is a requirement in the renewal of the Professional Identification Cards (PICs) of all registered and licensed professionals under the regulation of the PRC, as mandated by Republic Act (R.A) No. 10912 or the Continuing Professional Development Act of 2016.

PRC made this extension noting that the country is now under the State of Public Health Emergency and State of Calamity due to the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

CPD Providers canceled the scheduled offerings of their programs, including conventions, conferences and other forms of mass gatherings, which made it difficult for professionals to comply during this COVID-19 crisis.

Source: https://www.iloilotoday.com/prc-extends-cpd-renewal-2021/
* News / Covid-19: Nurses At Breaking Point As As Survey Finds 69% Are Planning to Resign by katty: May 29, 2020, 02:10:32 PM
Stressed out frontline nurses are at a breaking point and are putting lives at risk because they can't concentrate on patient care amid the COVID-19  crisis, a shocking new survey has revealed.

According to a countrywide mental health poll - obtained exclusively by DailyMailTV - health workers are close to burn out and a staggering 68% have revealed they plan to leave the industry.

Nursing has also seen skyrocketing rates of attrition during the pandemic and 50% of respondents said they are currently experiencing high levels of anxiety and emotional stress.

Shockingly, a high level of the nurses that took part say that their anxiety amid the unprecedented conditions is affecting their ability to do their job properly, which is putting lives at risk.




The survey shows that 56% of respondents claimed that the stress is affecting their concentration at work, 52% say they are distracted and 45% experience intrusive thoughts.

Half of the nurses surveyed admit they become worried at even the thought of going to work.

Replacing the huge number of nurses set to leave the frontline could cost the healthcare system $136billion.

And experts predict that unless healthcare companies start to treat their nurses better they face a staff shortage crisis in six months to a year.

The survey was run by HOLLIBLU, a community and technology for nurses, and FeedTrail, a real-time insights platform for patient and employee engagement.

They came together with mental health advocates, Kim LaMontagne and Portia Wofford, LVN to create a second national nurse survey addressing the mental well-being of nurses and what their biggest requirements were for staying at their current place of work.

More than 1,300 nurses aged between 21 and 76 responded anonymously to the survey on HOLLIBLU and Show Me Your Stethoscope, the largest online community of nurses, over seven days at the beginning of May.

Registered nurses accounted for 78% of the respondents, while 74% worked at hospitals or long term care organizations.

Cara Lunsford, founder of HOLLIBLU and a former nurse for child cancer patients, said the survey results are 'alarming', and warned that if even a fraction of those considering quitting followed through, there will be a crisis in healthcare and many more people in the hospital would die.

She told DailyMail.com: 'We asked the nurses whether they feel worried when they go to work. 'And interestingly enough, that was one of the most alarming questions. Half of nurses feel worried when they go to work. And then we talked about how does that worry manifest itself.

'We asked them a variety of things from basic heartbeat to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea to all kinds of things.

'The nurses said they were distracted at work, they had an inability to concentrate and they had intrusive thoughts, some of the top three things they were experiencing.

'So you can imagine how hard it is to actually care for patients when you're feeling like that.'

Lunsford believes the quality of care provided by healthcare providers will ultimately plummet with a workforce feeling so low.

But she says it will only take hospitals and healthcare companies to make small adjustments to keep hold of their disgruntled nurses.

'The survey shows that hospital systems just have to make small changes sometimes to have a huge impact.

'They need to support their staff, they need to listen to them, they need to care for them, they need to care about their staff as much as they care about the patient satisfaction.

'We were able to see that with employee satisfaction, you're gonna have patient satisfaction. 'You'll have better patient scores and nurses won't want to leave.'

Shockingly the survey showed that nurses only rated their mental health at 32 out of 100 prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and when asked how they're feeling right now the average score was 36 out of a 100.

Most nurses cited better communication, appreciation from management and an increase in pay as key factors in improving their job satisfaction.

Lunsford, a former pediatric oncology nurse, added: 'I think if the healthcare industry doesn't make some changes around areas of retention - pay and appreciation from management and nurse supported policies - then they are gonna see an exodus of nurses who are like, "you know what, I'm done. I was going to retire in five years. I'm retiring now".

'There's absolutely that risk because nurses were already burned out even before COVID-19.'

Lunsford says her firm HOLLIBLU is trying to urge the healthcare companies to take their 'head out of the sand'.

She said: 'The problem isn't going away, they're going to look up in six months or a year from now, and say, "Oh my God, I'm losing my workforce. I'm losing the people that are keeping this healthcare system running".

'And if you don't think that people will die from that, then you're kidding yourself because a lack of appropriate care, increasing nurse/patient ratios, these things all lead to sub-standard patient care, mistakes and death.'

In HOLLIBLU's first survey in April some nurses reported being stretched to the limit working 21 days straight amid the coronavirus chaos, while lacking basic PPE equipment like masks.

Across the country, more than 60% of nurses said they were on the verge of quitting their hospital or even the entire profession, some feeling their lives are being treated as 'expendable'.

Data company Feedtrail which analyzed the responses said huge proportions of nurses felt hopeless and overwhelmed, with comments including 'I have never felt more expendable in my life', 'it is absolutely terrifying', and 'we're all drowning'.

Source: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8363259/amp/Stressed-frontline-nurses-breaking-point-69-planning-quit-new-survey-reveals.html
* Postgraduates / Babcock University Ogun State 2020/2021 Admission into PhD Nursing Programme by katty: May 29, 2020, 02:03:01 PM
The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programme of the School of Nursing, Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo. Ogun State, Nigeria is structured in alignment with graduate education around the world. The PhD programme, a terminal degree in nursing is research-focused with emphasis on preparing nurse-scientists and scholars with vast information on scientific content and research methodology with ultimate strive for an original research and defense of a thesis.



Introduction


Our PhD nursing graduates are prepared to:

Utilize scientific orientation in advancing knowledge in nursing through research.
Demonstrate advanced knowledge in theory development, meta-theory analysis and sound research methodology.
Engage in scholarly research for problem solving.
Lead and mentor healthcare team through collaborative research.
Design innovative nursing research studies to improve nursing care practices.
Our faculty represents diverse backgrounds and are committed to preparing nurse scholars who can lead the nation and global community in extending body of nursing knowledge. Our faculty will support students with an understanding of nursing alongside the scientific rigour necessary to undertake a PhD (Nursing) degree. In this regard, our PhD (Nursing) programme is designed to foster the development of academically sound nurses who are capable of serving in leadership positions in academics, research and nursing services locally and internationally.

Accreditations


Our PhD (Nursing) programme, like all other programmes of the university, is fully approved and accredited by National Universities Commission (NUC), 26 Aguiyi Ironsi Street, PMB 237, Garki GPO, Maitama, Abuja. In addition, the programme was scrutini zed and approved by the International Board of Education (IBE)/Adventist Accrediting Association (AAA), 12501 Old Columbia Pike Silver Spring Maryland, 20904, United States of America.

Programme Structure


The structure of our PhD (Nursing) programme is both Regular (Full Time) and Elongated (Part time) modules. In addition, the programme constitutes both coursework and research components. Students are required to attend courses on campus. Other alternative methods of instruction may also apply. Admission criteria are strictly as approved by the Senate and the NUC.

Duration of the programme


Minimum of 6 semesters of Regular (Full Time) study and minimum of 7 semesters for Elongated (Part time) module.

Areas of Specialization


The PhD candidates will specialize in the following areas:

Adult Health/Medical-Surgical Nursing
Community Health/ Public Health Nursing
Maternal and Child Health Nursing
Contact numbers For further information about the program, please contact the following numbers: Dean, School of Nursing (07036725141 and 07084055539) Graduate programme coordinator (08023500321 and 07050916896)
* Articles / International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes: Health Workers Roles by katty: May 27, 2020, 08:23:55 AM
Do you know that Hospitals and Clinics are not allowed to collect posters, free samples, calendars, pens and other sourvenirs from companies producing breast milk substitutes? Below are the responsibilities of Nurses and other health workers.

The International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes: Frequently Asked Questions on the Roles and Responsibilities of Health Workers

Health workers have a vital role to play in educating mothers and other caregivers about infant and young child feeding. It is also their moral, legal and professional responsibility to protect, promote, and support optimal feeding.

However, health workers and health care facilities throughout the world are often used by baby food companies to promote breast-milk substitutes such as infant formula, specialized formulas, follow-up formula or growing up milks.


Image Credit: WHO

This frequently asked questions document aims to provide health workers with information on their specific roles and responsibilities in protecting breastfeeding practices against the inappropriate promotion of breast-milk substitutes by baby food companies.

1. What is the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes?


In 1981, the World Health Assembly adopted the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes as a set of recommendations to regulate the marketing of breastmilk substitutes, feeding bottles and teats.

The Code aims to ensure that breast-milk substitutes are available when needed but not promoted. It points out that, given the special vulnerability of infants and the risks involved in inappropriate feeding practices, usual marketing practices are unsuitable for breastmilk substitutes.
The Code includes a number of provisions about the role of health workers and health systems and points out that health workers should make themselves familiar with their responsibilities under the Code.

2. The Code was written almost 40 years ago. Is it still relevant today?

Yes, the Code remains as relevant and important as when it was adopted in 1981, if not more so. The World Health Assembly has reiterated the importance of the Code numerous times over the past 39 years, sometimes clarifying and adding to it with subsequent resolutions. As recently as 2018, the Assembly urged countries to continue to implement the Code.

The importance of breastfeeding has been proven in many ways. Still, the sale of breastmilk substitutes continues to increase around the world, mainly because of new, persistent and very effective marketing practices. Such practices seriously undermineefforts to protect, promote and support breastfeeding.

In addition to promoting infant formula, companies increasingly promote breast-milk substitutes for older infants and young children, from 6 months to 3 years of age. These products undermine sustained breastfeeding up to two years or beyond. The packaging and marketing of these products indirectly promotes infant formula.

3. It looks like the Code was written for baby food companies. What does it have to do with me, as a health worker?


The Code is directed at governments, health workers, baby food companies and everyone who has a responsibility to protect, promote and support breastfeeding.

As a health worker, part of your job is to inform and educate mothers and other caregivers about appropriate and optimal infant and young child feeding. Mothers should be supported to make informed and unbiased decisions free from any commercial influences by baby food companies.

The Code prohibits any type of promotion of breast-milk substitutes in health services. It also has specific recommendations for health workers on how to avoid being influenced by baby food companies.

4. How do baby food companies promote breast-milk substitutes using health workers?


Promotional practices include donating free or subsidized supplies of breast-milk substitutes, providing free samples of formula, offering education for families, giving gifts to health workers and their families, and sponsoring conferences and meetings.

Baby food companies often target health workers and health facilities to help promote their products. They build relationships and offer subtle incentives that lead to direct or indirect endorsement of the company’s products. These relationships threaten health workers’ independence, integrity and public credibility.

All of these practices are prohibited by the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes.

5. I work in a hospital in a poor area. We need to cut costs everywhere. Why is it so wrong to accept free formula to be used by mothers who can’t breastfeed?

Experience has shown that unregulated and unlimited free supplies of formula lead to its overuse and undermines breastfeeding. Companies donate formula knowing that free distribution creates brand loyalty among mothers after they leave the hospital.

Therefore, donations of free or subsidized supplies of breast-milk substitutes or other products are not allowed in any part of the health care system. Any infant formula needed for infants with medical reasons for its use should be obtained through normal procurement channels.

6. Many of our patients can’t afford milk products. Why shouldn’t I give free samples to families who can’t afford these products?


The Code clearly states that health workers should not give samples of any breast-milk substitute to pregnant women, mothers of infants and young children, or members of their families.

Most women are physically able to breastfeed their babies and don’t need to use breastmilk substitutes. Their use interferes with the production of the mother’s own milk. Even in the rare occasions when infants have a metabolic disorder where breastfeeding is contraindicated, or a specialized formula is needed, health workers should not give out samples.

If a mother is given a free sample in the hospital, she will tend to use it even if it isn’t needed. Samples encourage families to purchase the products when the samples run out, even if they can’t really afford the product. Families may be persuaded to formula feed because the sample is implicitly endorsed by you.

7. In my facility, can I display posters/calendars/information materials given by a baby food company that has pictures of babies breastfeeding?


No. Any gifts to health facilities from baby food companies are not allowed. Gifts, even small ones such as calendars or pens, create a sense of obligation and continuously remind the person who received them about the “generosity” of the giver.

In addition, the Code says that health care facilities should not be used for the display of products within the scope of the Code, or for placards or posters concerning such products. Usually, posters or information materials from baby food companies contain subtle messages that undermine breastfeeding even if they show pictures of breastfeeding babies.

Just as much as free samples could ‘hook’ a mother to a particular brand of breast-milk substitute, so could attractive displays of materials by a baby food company.

8. Our formula representatives bring us chocolate when they come to tell us about their products. Can I give that chocolate to
my kids?


While the offering of chocolate by your formula representative may seem innocent, even mall gifts, including chocolate, may make you feel that the company means well and that you owe the company loyalty or gratitude. Companies know that this sense of loyalty or gratitude often leads to endorsing and promoting the company’s products.

This is one of the reasons why the Code does not allow gifts to health facilities and health workers.

9. Sometimes I receive stationery, pens and other useful items from a company. Is accepting such items against the Code?


 Yes. These are gifts from the company, and the Code makes it clear that gifts from baby food companies are not allowed. In addition, these items often have logos or slogans from the company that can imply an endorsement of their products.

10. A company is hosting an event in my facility for mothers and babies, and they’re giving away prizes to the winners. That’s ok, right?


No, it is not ok. If health facilities allow baby food companies to access families directly, the facility will implicitly be promoting products rather than promoting health. The Code makes it absolutely clear that marketing personnel, in their business capacity, should not seek direct or indirect contact of any kind with pregnant women or with mothers of infants and young children.

11. Can we accept donations of laptop computers from baby food companies to be used in our clinics as long as they don’t have any logos of the company?

Donations of equipment, including laptops, will positively influence the attitudes of health workers and management of the facility towards the company and its products. This sense of obligation or influence can interfere with institutional policy and decision-making and the responsibility of the health professional to give trustworthy advice.

Such practices potentially undermine optimal infant and young child health and development. Even when there is no company logo, the donation itself will create a sense of obligation and loyalty.

12. Is it acceptable for baby food companies to advertise in our waiting room?

No, the Code says that health care facilities should not be used for the display of products within the scope of the Code, or for placards or posters concerning such products.

13. We have shelves of infant formula in our hospital for babies that can’t breastfeed. Should we put up a curtain to cover it up?

Yes. Any breast-milk substitute stored in hospitals, including in maternity wards, should be stored out of sight. A closed cupboard or generic bags could also be used to prevent promotion to patients or staff members.

14. Is it ok to distribute brochures promoting breastfeeding that come from manufacturers of baby foods as long as there are no advertisements for their products?

No. The Code does not allow baby food companies to directly or indirectly provide education to parents and other caregivers on infant and young child feeding in health facilities. Brochures would be one way of providing education. Besides that, brochures from baby food companies often have pictures or implicit messages that favour commercial products over breastfeeding.

15. My patients need education on infant feeding and I don’t have enough staff to run classes. Can baby food companies help if they don’t promote their products?

No, they can’t. Representatives of companies that produce breast-milk substitutes are not allowed to provide education in health facilities, either directly or indirectly, to parents of infants and young children.

If a mother needs to use a breast-milk substitute, you must ensure that any education is done by someone with no connection with the baby food industry.

16. I need to improve my professional knowledge. Why can’t I accept funding from a baby food company for travel or attendance at professional conferences or meetings?

Funding provided by baby food companies for travel or attendance at professional conferences or meetings is another way the company tries to influence you and create a relationship in which you feel indebted to them. It is a form of financial inducement and is prohibited by the Code.

17. What do I do if a baby food company representative tells me that acceptance of samples, gifts or invitations to conferences or study programmes is allowed in the country?

It is important for you as a health worker to make yourself familiar with the Code itself as well as with any legislation that your country may have adopted to stop inappropriate promotion of breast-milk substitutes. Just because your country may not have outlawed these gifts doesn’t mean that accepting them is ethical or appropriate.

18. How do I obtain more information about how my country is regulating the promotion of breast-milk substitutes?

Your health facility should make available any information on national legislation on the Code. In addition, WHO, UNICEF and IBFAN publish reports on national Code laws in countries every two years, and you can find these on the WHO website (www.who.int/health-topics/breastfeeding).

But remember, regardless of whether your country has adopted Code legislation, you as a health worker have responsibilities under the Code to promote, protect and support breastfeeding. The Code calls on you to ensure that parents and their babies are protected from marketing practices by companies whilst in your care.

19. What do I do if I see promotion of breast-milk substitutes in my workplace?

When you learn of activities that violate the Code in your facility, you should report them to your supervisor. Your facility may have a standard reporting procedure, or it could be part of regular quality improvement assessments.

In addition, in many countries the Ministry of Health has set up a monitoring system where you can report promotional practices that you observe. Non-governmental organizations or civil society networks, such as the International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN), can help with reporting violations as well.

Credit: The international code of marketing of breast-milk substitutes: frequently asked questions on the roles and responsibilities of health workers. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2020. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
* News / Survey Finds 87% of America’s Nurses Forced to Reuse Protective Equipment by katty: May 27, 2020, 06:40:07 AM
The vast majority of America’s nurses say they have not been tested for Covid-19, are reusing personal protective equipment (PPE), or have exposed skin or clothing while caring for Covid-19 patients, a new survey has shown.

The nationally representative survey finds that “dangerous healthcare workplace conditions have become the norm” since Covid-19 spread widely in the US, said the union which conducted the survey. More than 100 nurses have died since the beginning of the pandemic.



“We’ve known for years we’re behind,” said Jean Ross, president of National Nurses United. “Not because we couldn’t have what we needed – because we are the richest country on the planet – but because of greed, because of the profit system that doesn’t really look out for the welfare of patients. Therefore it couldn’t possibly look out for the welfare of workers.”

Unlike most developed nations, the United States does not have universal healthcare, and relies primarily on private hospitals and insurance, largely tied to employment. It is the most expensive health system in the world.

The survey asked more than 23,000 nurses across all 50 states and Washington DC about their working conditions since the pandemic began. The survey represents the period between 15 April and 10 May, and was conducted by National Nurses United. It included both union and non-union nurses.

In it, surveyors found 84% of nurses had not been tested for Covid-19, 87% are forced to reuse personal protective equipment designed to be single-use, such as N95 masks and face shields, and 72% of nurses have exposed skin or clothing while treating coronavirus patients.

Nurses have staged multiple, ongoing protests for more personal protective equipment since the pandemic began. In viral images, nurses have been shown wearing makeshift gowns including rain ponchos, using the same N95 mask for weeks and have described severe rationing.

At the same time, lack of a cohesive national strategy has left many states bidding amongst themselves for gear, driven up the price of N95 masks, and caused some states and hospitals to turn to billionaires for help.

The survey also found that of the nurses who have received Covid-19 tests, more than 500 tested positive. Another 500 nurses are waiting for results. A third of nurses surveyed said if they were diagnosed or suspected to be Covid-19 positive, employers required them to use earned vacation or sick time to recover.

“Nurses signed up to care for their patients,” said Bonnie Castillo, NNU executive director and a registered nurse. “They did not sign up to die needlessly on the front lines of a pandemic. Our message to employers and the Trump administration is: platitudes are empty without protections. For our sake, for the public’s sake: give us PPE.”

Source : https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/20/survey-finds-87-of-americas-nurses-are-forced-to-reuse-protective-equipment
* News / Ghana Treating Frontline Health Workers Better Than US – Report by katty: May 25, 2020, 05:59:14 PM
Health workers at the Frontline of the covid-19 fight in Ghana are being treated better than their counterpart in the US, The Washington Post, has revealed, with calls on the US government to emulate the intervention of the Ghanaian Government for health workers.

In its latest report sighted by DGN Online, The Washington Post analysed how frontline health workers are treated in countries across the world.



It did a comparative analysis between Ghana and the US, concluding that Ghana's frontline health workers are taken better care of than those in the US.

Its conclusion was drawn based on the relief packages introduced by the government of Ghana led by Akufo-Addo.

According to The Washington Post, “Hazard pay has become a rallying cry and a source of controversy around the world as health-care workers risk their lives on the front lines – often without adequate supplies or protection. Ghana is offering some of the globe's most generous additional benefits while a number of nations move to expand their support for those labouring in highly infectious environments.”

Meanwhile, Covid-19 interventions by governments of Canada, Russia, France, the United Kingdom and Iraq, were also compared.

According to the report, the above countries have introduced special interventions to cushion health workers but in the US, some health care workers are faced with pay cuts because the hospitals are running at a loss.

President Akufo-Addo, it would be recalled, in his fifth address to the nation, announced that all health workers will be exempted from tax payment on their monthly emoluments for the next three months and further announced an additional package of a 50 per cent increment of basic salary from March to June 2020.

Canada announced salary hikes. France pledged bonuses for doctors and nurses as part of its $120 billion rescue package. Russia made a similar promise though some emergency responders have not seen the cash. An Iraqi governor said public health employees would be rewarded with free land. The United Kingdom is paying families of medical workers who die of Covid-19 a lump sum of 60,000 euros or about $65,000.

While carrying out its analysis, The Washington Post reportedly spoke to some Ghanaian frontline health workers who accordingly expressed their satisfaction with the government's actions and willingness to work more because of the reliefs by the President.

The report said the health workers observed that they felt motivated to work hard and are ever ready to put their lives on the line in the fight against Covid-19.

One Rebecca Kumah, a 35-year-old nurse who treats Covid-19 patients on the night shift in Accra said “it has been such a great relief. Our sacrifice is recognised.”

Also, a 31-year-old Physician at Lekma Hospital, Emmanuel Amankra said “Now everyone is on red alert for Covid-19. Everyone is just like, 'This has never been done before.' It helps to know what you are doing is being seen. I'll say: 'Oh, I'm tired. I'm going to take a break.' And then someone says, 'Well, you're getting a tax cut,' and we keep working.”

But “American officials have repeatedly referred to the country's doctors and nurses as “heroes,” and President Trump has described them as “running into death just like soldiers running into bullets.” But the United States has approved no national hazard pay, and some health-care workers face reduced hours and pay as hospitals suffer losses,” according to the report.

Dr Patrick Aboagye, Director-General of the Ghana Health Service reportedly spoke to The Washington Post, saying government introduced the interventions because when health workers are happier employees, they would be more effective with fighting the virus.

“When people are motivated, they do their work from their hearts. The coronavirus is deadly and the people who treat patients endure constant exposure. They are more likely to get sick…They must feel supported,” Dr Aboagye is quoted to have said.

On the back of this, the US government, in the report has been advised to learn from Ghana and the other countries to improve the protection given to health workers risking their lives to treat COVID-19 patients.

Ghana's COVID-19 responses have previously received recognition from world leaders across the world, with many urging both developed and developing countries to emulate the country's approach in fighting the pandemic.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recognized the efforts of the Akufo-Addo-led government in the fight against the pandemic, suggesting it is one of the few countries in the world with effective COVID-19 management response.

---Daily Guide
* News / Visa Fears Mean Filipino Nurses ‘Feel Unable to Say No’ During Crisis by katty: May 25, 2020, 03:55:59 PM
Filipino nurses working in the UK fear repercussions for their visa status if they refuse any work during the coronavirus outbreak, according to a leading nurse campaigner.

Francis Fernando, officer of the Filipino Nurses UK Association, has been among the key voices raising concerns about the impact of the crisis on migrant nurses from the Philippines.



Emerging evidence points to an overrepresentation of black and minority ethnic (BME) health and care workers among Covid-19 fatalities.

Mr Fernando, a former nurse consultant and matron who has temporarily stepped back from practice, is aware of at least 44 deaths among Filipino colleagues.

“I am very sad for my comrades and their families as we continue to have high numbers of Filipino deaths due to Covid-19, often in the NHS and social care,” Mr Fernando told Nursing Times.

“We are disheartened, and the group feels this because we are perceived to just get on with it, and because we are voiceless at the moment.

“Myself and my colleagues have tried to raise some awareness and asked for the government to act now rather than later.”

This call for action is inclusive of all BME NHS colleagues to prevent having any more “devastated families”.

As well as being active on social media, Mr Fernando has written to chief nursing officer for England, Ruth May, voicing the concerns of Filipino nurses.

He said: “We know now they are at higher risk when contracting the virus than their white counterparts."


Mr Fernando added that approximately 80% of the Filipino staff who have died should have been shielded, but they were still working.

The UK has one of the highest levels of foreign-born nurses in the EU, with an estimated 40,000 Filipino staff employed in the NHS.

Mr Fernando explained: “Filipino nurses have always worked on the frontline. We are always exposed to risks and there’s no difference with the Covid-19.

“Some of my colleagues, actually most of us, are doing extra work. If we are asked by our managers to cover shifts rather than [them] going to agency, we feel obliged to do it.

“We feel, not coerced, but obliged to do it because we ‘owe’ our employers for being here, because obviously some of those who died were still on the Tier 2 [general work] visa."

He said this feeling of responsibility leaves Filipino workers “overexposed” and “stressed”, compromising their physical and mental health.

He said: “There is also the culture of Filipinos, that we are not able to say ‘no’ and we don’t assert our rights to say that there’s a problem if we are being put in harm’s way.

“They don’t say something about it…because they think it will affect their visa sponsorship.”

However, Mr Fernando said there was “hope” ahead for the community and work to improve the situation is already being carried out.

As previously reported by Nursing Times, a free and confidential helpline has been set up for Filipino workers and their families and a government inquiry is currently underway into the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on BME communities.

The life assurance scheme from the government will pay £60,000 to families who have lost a relative to Covid-19 who was working for the NHS or social care during the outbreak.

While Mr Fernando welcomes the scheme, it is “little consolation for the huge loss in their lives”.

A campaign has been set up to raise money for the families affected.

The new Filipino support service is available by phone seven days a week between 7am and 11pm on 0300 303 1115 or 24 hours via text by texting Frontline to 85258.

Source: https://www.nursingtimes.net/news/coronavirus/visa-fears-mean-filipino-nurses-feel-unable-to-say-no-during-crisis-25-05-2020/
* News / Fraudsters Pose as Nurses on Dating Sites as Coronavirus Scams Soar by katty: May 22, 2020, 01:10:27 PM
Fraudsters are posing as nurses on dating sites as they seek to take advantage of the coronavirus pandemic.

National Crime Agency (NCA) director general Lynn Owens said online shopping fraud is up 46% since the lockdown, "making it one of the biggest growth areas in crime", with Covid-19 now linked to around 3% of all scams reported.



Criminals are playing on people's fears, offering fake or non-existent items for sale, including game consoles, personal protective equipment (PPE), medicines, hand sanitiser, and even puppies, she told reporters on Thursday.

"We've even seen reports of a dating fraud where people are pretending to be... a nurse in a hospital and say, 'I need money to help me to get to work', and abuse people that way," she said.

Investigators also fear organised crime gangs could try to exploit the Government's financial stimulus package.

The NCA is working with the Cabinet Office, the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) and HMRC to identify fraudulent claims being made.

Ms Owens said production of cocaine in South America and heroin in Asia has continued "almost unaffected" by Covid-19, but restriction of movement rules has allowed the agency to intercept large batches.

The NCA was involved in the seizure of some 25 tonnes of Class A drugs around the world last month, including two tonnes of cocaine off the coast of Panama, another four tonnes off the coast of Spain and Portugal, and hundreds of kilos of heroin in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Ms Owens said: "Restrictions have meant fewer opportunities for criminals to move drugs in smaller, more discreet amounts, especially through passenger traffic, which in turn means they've had to take more risks and move more drugs in bulk.

"Criminals may believe that authorities are distracted, particularly at ports, and think there is an opportunity to import larger quantities. We have shown this is far from the truth."

Seizures at the border included a quarter of a tonne of cocaine at Dover on May 5 found hidden under a load of medical dry ice, which was falsely addressed to a north London hospital.

Investigators have made more than 130 arrests for serious organised crime-related offences and seized more than £15 million pounds in suspected criminal cash during the Covid-19 lockdown.

There has been an increase in firearms seizures, with 39, including semi-automatic weapons such as Skorpion submachine guns and an AK47 assault rifle, over the last eight weeks.

The NCA is also targeting paedophiles, with 46 arrests linked to child sex abuse, including a man in his 30s, who allegedly pretended to be a teenage girl, inciting more than 100 young victims to send him images so he could blackmail them.

Investigators expect a rise of reports in child sexual abuse carried out during the lockdown as restriction of movement rules are eased.

And criminals are predicted to look to exploit opportunities to import drugs and illegal migrants to the UK.

Ms Owens added: "We assess that there is a strong likelihood that organised crime groups will seek to exploit professionals such as lorry drivers or port or airport or workers, many of whom may be more financially vulnerable, as a consequence of the lockdown and their loss of work.

"We have issued an alert to ports and airport operators reinforcing the need for staff to report any approaches or suspicious activity."

Source : https://www.lancashiretelegraph.co.uk/news/18468945.fraudsters-pose-nurses-dating-sites-coronavirus-scams-soar/
* News / Nurse Under Fire for Wearing Lingerie Under Transparent PPE on Covid Ward by katty: May 20, 2020, 04:36:18 PM
A nurse treating coronavirus patients has been photographed wearing just lingerie under her transparent PPE. The unnamed Russian woman was working on a Covid-19 ward, treating only male patients, a a hospital in Tula. The image quickly went viral, as she can be seen wearing matching black bra and knickers as she writes a patient's chart. But hospital chiefs were not amused and punished the nurse for “non-compliance with the requirements for medical clothing”.

The nurse, in her 20s said she was “too hot” wearing her nurses’ uniform under the gown. She told her managers at Tula Regional Clinical Hospital that she did not realise the PPE she wore when treating coronavirus patients was so transparent. The regional health ministry reported that “a disciplinary sanction was applied to the nurse of the infectious diseases department who violated (uniform) requirements”.



Her chiefs at first said the woman was wearing “lingerie” but later claimed she had a “swimming suit” beneath the gown. The nurse has not spoken publicly on the incident and the exact details of the disciplinary action were not revealed. One patient said there was no objection from men in the coronavirus ward while admitting there was "some embarrassment".

A reader of local newspaper Tula News congratulated the nurse. “At least someone has a sense of humour in this gloomy, gloomy reality,” said Sergey Ratnikov. “Why the reprimand?” asked Albert Kuzminov.

Another supporter said: “Everyone shouted at her, but no one paid attention that she was dressed in this way because of the heat. “Maybe you need to yell at the management … because there is no normal air conditioning here.”

Marina Astakhova posted: "Well done, she raised the mood of the patients.” While Valery Kapnin wrote: “Why punish the nurse, you need to reward her. “Seeing this outfit, no-one wants to die.”

The incident came as the head of Russia’s Covid-19 monitoring centre, a former TV doctor, Alexander Myasnikov, shocked viewers with his blunt speaking on the coronavirus crisis. “The infection will anyway take its toll,” he said.

“We will anyway all get sick. Those who were supposed to die will die.  By Tuesday, Russia had a total of 299,941 cases of infection, with an official death toll of 2,837.

Many experts believe the Russian statistics underscore the true level of fatalities. Officially, Tula has had 2,637 infections with 19 deaths.

Source: https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/nurse-who-too-hot-wore-22056317
* News / Hospital shuts 25 theatres after 4 nurses contracted Coronavirus by katty: May 19, 2020, 02:59:22 PM
Southern Seoul authorities are concerned after four nurses who work at Samsung Medical Centre tested positive for Coronavirus.

As a precautionary measure, the hospital has closed down 25 operating rooms on the third floor of the main building and will not treat new in-patients for the next three days.



This development raises concerns over the possibility of a bigger outbreak after medical workers of the cardiothoracic and ob-gyn operating rooms in the hospital tested positive on Monday and Tuesday.

Of the 277 patients and hospital workers who must be checked for the virus, 265 have undergone screening. Around 100 of them are waiting for the results, while the remaining 12 will be checked later in the day, according to the office of Gangnam Ward.

Authorities have yet to identify the infection route. The new group infection began when a nurse working at the hospital’s cardiothoracic operating rooms tested positive on Monday. Three other nurses later were confirmed to be infected.

The first nurse did not report for work during the weekend and showed symptoms of a fever Sunday night, according to the health authorities.

Source : PM News
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