International Nurses’ Day is being observed this year under the theme: "Nurses: A Voice to Lead - Invest in Nursing and respect rights to secure global health."
As Guyana celebrates nurses locally, the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) which is the largest public healthcare supplier currently has some 754 nurses.
However, the hospital still remains understaffed with a deficit of 607 nurses and a shortfall of 188 registered nurses. This was revealed in a mini documentary published on the hospital’s Facebook page to mark International Nurses Day.
This has impacted the delivery of healthcare, says the Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the hospital Robbie Rambarran.
“There are many times we have about two nurses to 20 patients when the ratio should be like one nurse to four patients.”
Rambarran who served the hospital for some 20 years further emphasised that “there have been a deficiency in nursing care. I have said over and over again we will build new hospitals, we will have state of the art equipment but if we don’t have the nursing care we will be shooting ourselves in the foot.”
Despite this challenge, he has pledged to advocate for the nurses especially in the area of remuneration- even though this is not in his control.
Nurses are one of the key contributors to a nation’s development and it is against this backdrop that Rambarran has called for nurses to be recognised more for their hard work and dedication.
Several healthcare workers who also spoke on behalf of the hospital have also committed to providing access to quality healthcare service.