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Celebrate the contributions that nurses make to a healthy Western Cape

12 May 2022

As an ever-present force for good, 13 823 nurses employed by the Western Cape Government Health and Wellness (WCGHW) are at the core of enabling high-quality, accessible, and affordable healthcare for the residents in the Western Cape. They are present to hear the first cries of newborn babies and witness the last breaths of the dying. This International Nurses Day, we celebrate their essential roles in being advocates for health promotion, disease prevention and dissemination of information.

“Nurses are not only the heart of healthcare, but they are also the backbone of the healthcare system. They are the glue that holds the healthcare system together. Today, I thank all nurses in the Western Cape for their compassion and care. Happy International Nurses Day! Thank you for your dedication and hard work,” says Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, Western Cape Minister of Health and Wellness.

“I would like to celebrate nurses and the caring, nurturing role they fulfil. They have time and again, illustrated their resilience, dedication and fearlessness in saving the lives of our patients and risking their own. They sacrifice long hours, family and personal time in serving the sick and vulnerable in our communities, leaving their own families at home and putting their patients’ needs above their own,” says Dr Cloete, Head of the Western Cape Department of Health and Wellness.

“With this year’s theme being “Nurses: A Voice to Lead - Invest in Nursing and respect rights to secure global health”, We express our utmost gratitude to each and every healthcare worker that have been risking their lives during this pandemic and went beyond the call of duty, on a daily basis. We honour the lives of those we’ve  lost and to which end, we are forever thankful. We honour, value and acknowledge the role each nurse plays in our society for being our ambassadors and adding meaning to our patients’ lives,” adds Dr Cloete.

One of the nurses Lizeka Dana, an Advanced Midwife at Groote Schuur Hospital, with 12 years’ experience, outlined why she thinks nurses should also invest in themselves. “I studied further because I did not just want to be a registered nurse, I wanted to be advanced in my field, to be acknowledged hence the need to develop myself. So that I can also impact knowledge and be able to manage complications in absentia of doctors.”

Nurses love what they do, and some had the following to say about International Nurses Day. Sister Zukisa Moses, Acting Operational Manager at Groote Schuur Hospital, says “Nurses Day is one of the days where we are appreciated as nurses for the dedication and hard work we invest in patients. The fact that we are recognized on this day for our work in health care drives me.”

Enrolled Nursing Assistant at Tygerberg Hospital, Nicolette Dreyer says, “As a nurse, who is compassionate about serving my patients with dignity, I feel honoured that my profession is celebrated. My patients are my priority.”

Groote Schuur Hospital’s Head of Nursing, Mr Aghmat Mohammed, says “Nurses Day serves to highlight the important role nurses fulfil in healthcare and in society. Nurses are without a doubt the biggest workforce in any healthcare setting, and this shows the valuable role nurses play in the prevention and management of health-related conditions in any healthcare system. This shows that unlike any other profession nurses are with the patient 24/7, 365 days of the year including public holidays when we all are spending quality time with our loved ones. We want to say thank you to our nurses across the province, the country, and the world. Happy International Nurses Day and thank you for being there for our patients and their families when they most need us. Thank you for getting up in the early hours of the morning in the dark walking through not so safe areas to get to work. We salute you and appreciate your hard work and commitment.”