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12 May 2018

Hospersa celebrates the role played by nurses amid difficult working conditions in delivering health care services in South Africa.  The Union has vowed to continue campaigning for an improved public health care service and improved working conditions for nurses.

On 12 May 2018, Hospersa joins the international community in celebrating International Nurses Day.  This annual celebration looks to highlight the important role nurses play in the society and marks the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth.  The International Council of Nurses (ICN) leads these celebrations and this year’s theme is “The right to health”.  The South African Nursing Council (SANC) has extended this theme to “Nurses also have a right to health”. 

“Hospersa recognises the role played by nurses in our communities where they work under severe pressure on day to day basis,” says Hospersa Public Relations Officer Kevin Halama.  “Poor working conditions specifically in public health facilities continue being a thorn in the flesh in the delivery of quality health care to many of the country’s communities.  Mismanagement and maladministration have also been blamed where the reported flaunting of supply chain processes has lead to insufficient medical suppliers in public health facilities,” added Halama.

“Nurses need to be looked after as they are the lifeblood of the health care system,” said Halama.  “Their role in our clinics and hospitals ensures that primary health care reaches the most vulnerable South Africans who depend on it the most.  Nurses remain the thread holding the public health care system together where many challenges beyond their control continue to paralyse it,” added Halama.

“Unfortunately, the high prevalence of work place infections of Tuberculosis (TB) is robbing public health facilities of a skilled workforce that consist of predominantly nurses. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), South Africa (SA) has the second-highest TB incidence amongst health care workers in the world,” added Halama.

“Poor working conditions and being overworked are also contributing factors to an exodus of nurses in public health opting for better opportunities in the private sector.  What is more alarming is that the Department of Health (DoH) is not filling these vacant posts while many qualified health care workers remain on the unemployment line,” argued Halama.

“We take our hats off to our nurses,” said Halama.  “Hospersa will continue campaigning for an improved public health care system that not only addresses the delivery of quality health care to communities but also looks at improving the lives of the many nurses that are at the forefront of the country’s public health care system,” concluded Halama.





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For interviews please contact Hospersa Public Relations Officer Kevin Halama – 060-546-8166.

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