Staff to Share Best Practices at International Council of Nurses’ Congress
Mrs Maureen Manasse (42), an enrolled nurse from Groote Schuur Hospital (GSH), sold her car for R7 000 so she could have enough money for a plane ticket to go to Melbourne, Australia.
Manasse, who originally was not selected to go, is one of 42 nurses from the Western Cape Government Health who will be attending the International Council of Nurses’ (ICN) 25th Quadrennial Congress, taking place in Melbourne, Australia from 18-23 May 2013.
The first group of nurses (38) will be departing from Cape Town airport on Tuesday 14 May 2013 at 10:45 and the second group (six) will be departing on Wednesday 15 May.
Great excitement abounds as most of these nurses have raised their own funds to be able to go to the conference, with the logistical support from the Department.
Manasse, from Lotus River, who has never been on an aeroplane, has worked at GSH for five years. Prior to GSH, she worked in a factory for 15 years, starting out as a cleaner and then a designing room assistant. She was a home-based carer for three years before starting at Groote Schuur as an enrolled nursing assistant. She said, “I believe I was born to be a nurse, it’s in my blood.”
Someone who couldn’t go to the conference anymore gave her spot to her. She and the other hospital teams, who were sending nurses, started raising funds (eg made boerewors rolls at home, made and sold vetkoek and doughnuts). She said she had saved the money but due to unforeseen circumstances had to use it. Her husband, Roger, being her biggest fan, whole-heartedly supported her going on this trip and agreed to sell their Opel Cub 1600 to ensure that she would have enough money to cover her plane ticket, because all the nurses needed to raise R15 000 each. “It means that much to me, I hope it inspires people to do things for themselves. I’m excited and looking forward to seeing the difference in nursing processes, how they do things differently from us, what we can take back and learn from each other.”
The Western Cape Health Minister, Theuns Botha, says “Our nurses form almost half of the staff component of the health department, and play a special role in providing and maintaining the health care system through the provision of a comprehensive quality health care service. I want to thank every nurse for your special commitment to health care.
“Despite intense efforts to develop, recruit and retain specialised nurses, and despite the Occupational Specific Dispensation for nurses, the specialised services now have 25,4% less specialised nurses than four years ago. A main challenge remains to increase the number of nurses to be released and trained in specialty nursing. In the Western Cape 746 nurses still need to be trained by 2015. “
The Department is enthusiastic about the Congress providing a global platform for the dissemination of nursing knowledge and leadership across specialities, cultures and countries via the ICN scientific programme, featuring keynote and main session invited speakers as well as a wide range of concurrent sessions, including dynamic papers accepted through the highly competitive abstract selection process.
This Congress will be highlighting the importance of equity and access to health care for communities and individuals, demonstrating how nurses are key to ensuring equal access and quality of health care for all.