Lack of skilled nurses a major challenge

There is a need for more specialized training for nurses, according to Letrade-Wyke
There is a need for more specialized training for nurses, according to Lestrade-Wyke

The lack of skilled nurses is a major sticking point in Dominica’s health sector, acting principal nursing officer and matron, Letitia Lestrade-Wyke, has said.

On Monday Dominica joins the rest of the world in observing International Nurses Day and Lestrade-Wyke said although the nursing sector has come a long way, specialized training for nurses is lacking.

“We have come a long way. We have seen an improvement and we have seen an increase in the number of nurses that we have. However, our challenge is the skills mix,” she told DNO. “We have specialized areas in nursing for example Midwifery, Intensive Care Nursing, and the biggest challenge is getting persons trained in those specialty areas.”

She pointed out further that a lack of resources and lack of access to the training programs can be blamed for the problem but stated assistance is being sought to train some nurses for specalised areas.

“We have implemented local training, for example our dialysis nurses are trained in Dominica, the midwifery persons are trained at the Faculty of Health and Sciences (of the DSC) and even the operating theatre nurses have our local training also. We train them on the job,” she said.

She added that nurses on the island have improved in terms of professional development.

“Nurses have come a long way,” the matron noted. “A lot of them have done post graduate studies. Also in the nursing service we have this mentorship coaching program that was implemented in April that will further assist our nurses in ensuring improvement in delivery of care.”

A public speaking competition at the Princess Margaret Hospital on Monday afternoon will be the highlight of activities to commemorate International Nurses Day.

Five nurses of the various wards of the hospital will go head to head to debate  the topic “A force for change-A vital resource for health.”

Lestrade-Wyke said the competition is the first of its kind at the Princess Margaret Hospital.

“Research for us is very vital in nursing in terms of improvement of patient care and if our nurses prepare and we do this public speaking competition, it will allow them to improve their research skills, to analyze information and also help them build up their public speaking skills and since they had to work together as a team, we felt that it would boost teams spirit in the various departments,” she explained.

A radio address by the President of the Nurses Association, Deborah Phillip, is another main activity for the day.

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23 Comments

  1. Open Mind
    May 13, 2014

    :oops: :twisted: :mrgreen: :?: The nursing service in Dominica is similar to that of the police, in that it’s the only option for a salary, so school leavers join for this reason. The low-pit-all structure says it all, when one enters there for treatment, it’s like being buried in a pit. I wouldn’t want to always blame the nurses, cause the government has fooled the people, by promising a state of the art modern hospital from since 2004,which should have been completed since in 2010.Every election they make the same promise which i hope the people is not gonna fall for this time around. This present illegal government led by Roosevelt Skeritt has failed the people and destroyed every institution. Shame on them, vote them out!

  2. Pondera
    May 13, 2014

    Congratulations to our nurses. The job is challenging but you have persevered. Just a secret here: personal development is not an agenda of someone set for you but it is that which you set for yourself. Be deliberate in seeking your training opportunities. There is an abundance of money, so find the creative ways to tap into the monies and go get your training. We depend on you!

  3. paybouche passie
    May 12, 2014

    Nursing today is not as yesterday, there is not the caring and love for patients.The college should really do a proper selection of those choosing the profession.Nursing is a vocation it calls for patience, love, understanding always try to put people before yourself and if it was you how would you feel when persons are being treated badly, without compassion

  4. Ben Haynes PsyD
    May 12, 2014

    What nurses should know, what we are prepared to let them know is vital for patient care and the growth of nursing in Dominica. We all agree that politics play a vicious role in our country, but the sad fact is, it damages the nursing profession and the quality of nursing in Dominica. When nursing education is at such a low web the entire nation, the nation suffers. We are seeing the disgust, the exit of nursing staff, and the sad state of our hospitals. I agree with one commentator that ethics is not present, and many outsiders, salaries are low. Nursing is a highly, and honored profession. Nurses should have the right to exercise, and to gain knowledge in their fields. To stifle their growth means a weak, sick society. The time is now to make better, qualified nurses if our health and medical systems are to make headway.

  5. D/can to de Bone[F}
    May 12, 2014

    She pointed out further that a lack of resources and lack of access to the training programs can be blamed for the problem but stated assistance is being sought to train some nurses for specalised areas.

    Mr Timothy please read and act on the above statement this is serious. We both of A p;us in health care

  6. Neutral
    May 12, 2014

    Here we go again. I read the article an wondered if political affiliation was involved, again it would appear that is the case. Dominica will not progress under the current atmosphere. Put your most qualified and capable people in charge regardless of which party they support. That is a step in the right direction.

  7. yetty
    May 12, 2014

    so many nurses asked min of health for time out so they can go to study and min of health did not give them time out last year lets see what happens this year

    • the life
      May 12, 2014

      When they go they not passing back.

      • Rastafari
        May 13, 2014

        So true, cause they get better training, treatment and pay elsewhere. Go figure :mrgreen:

  8. All Fools Day jokers
    May 12, 2014

    “She pointed out further that a lack of resources and lack of access to the training programs can be blamed for the problem but stated assistance is being sought to train some nurses for specalised areas.
    I prefer to believe a professional 1000 times than a lying politician because the professional does not take political sides and usually says it as it is, whereas a politician or maybe I should say those all fools day jokers we have in office seek for ways to lie and deceive the people.
    In the “May Day ALL Fools Day” rally in St. Joseph, Skerrit gave the impression that health care has improved significantly under the DLP (although no one in their right mind believed him), with new equipments and so forth. But here is acting principle nursing officer and matron, Letitia Lestrade-Wyke, is lamenting the fact that they are lacking skilled nurses and resources.

    • Espoire mal papaya
      May 12, 2014

      The all fool is you. Politics aside. You started with a quote and a parenthesis and did not close with one.

      • All Fools Day jokers
        May 12, 2014

        @Espoire mal papaya, Thanks for the observation because I did not realize I did not close with quotation marks. Well I guess that make you smart. What then are you upset about? FYI the ‘FOOLS’ that appear in my name is because the DLP used the May day Rally to Fool Dominicans just as we used April 1, to fool folks. I guess you are one of those fooled?

      • Observant reader
        May 12, 2014

        Just have to laugh at you. U just confirmed my suspicion Am not even in DA been 31 yrs. I don’t even know the parties I was only checking ur non-command of ……………….
        fool

    • hot
      May 12, 2014

      Health care has improved? Not even the machines at the PMH give proper tests results. When one goes overseas with those results to give those specialists, he says don’t even waste your money to go to do those tests at the hospital, because those results are not accurate. Shame on those ministers for fooling us. They know exactly the present state at the hospital that is why they go overseas for medical care and the wife to have her baby in the US? Have we asked ourselves why are so many people dying at the hospitals? The whole health care system is poor. Dominicans, do we love ourselves and our children or are we just saying I love my PM? Well, let me tell you our PM and ministers care nothing about us. After all those years, they come now and offer us bribes and treat us like beggars, offering us crumbs to fool us just to get back into power. They fool us just to get our votes and then forget us for another four to five years. Wake up, Dominicans. Help save our country for our children and grandchildren. Dominica does not belong to a few. Can’t you see what is happening? Fifteen years is more than enough for these people. They have overstayed their welcome. They care nothing about us but themselves and their friends who help them to carry out their corruption. It is time for people with a vision, time for a change. Dominica is not the PM inheritance. No, Dominica belongs to all of us. It is time for a change. Get those lazy people out. They are only enriching themselves. They have become millionaires with our money and we have become the poorest in the Eastern Caribbean. Please let us join our hearts and hands and minds together to rescue our country from these most corrupt leaders.

  9. John Jay
    May 12, 2014

    This is true but the govt playing POLITICS with the training so this is why the nurses have to migrate.
    Want to congratulate all the nurses.

  10. Gladi
    May 12, 2014

    Skills is not the only thing they have to teach them, they also need to teach them some ethics. How to keep people’s
    private medical information PRIVATE.

    • Just wondering
      May 12, 2014

      You couldn’t have said it better. I know Dominica is a small society but they should still be professional. Social workers at the psychiatric unit are the same.

    • To all bamsees
      May 12, 2014

      people the world over like beouf & our peeps are no different . Maybe we invented it. so what do you expect.
      politician ,nurse doctor, engineer, business people, dentists,farmers ,RADIO -peeps live for it.You like it I like everybody like it.Some of us cannot wait to reach home to call and dispense it like medicine now we have cell phone we topping up to divulge beouf. Some on watsup,facebook twitter living for it breathing it.
      Anation of metveye’s

    • Anonymous
      May 12, 2014

      I agree 100% so true!!!!

    • Pharmacist
      May 12, 2014

      Gladi, one of them seems to have outted your little or big secrete. You sure it wasn’t a doctor or Pharmists when you went with ur prescription. The script can sell out the ailment lol! you never know.

  11. grell
    May 12, 2014

    Sad for our nurses,they should be top priority,but our people need to open their eyes first,here we have a corrupt government,an a multi million dollar pm.What results can we get. :-|

  12. nurse abroad
    May 12, 2014

    you expect nurses to stay in dominica for that little salary mixed with the political hand picking of people that have not shown the capabilities in certain areas

    • Bee
      May 12, 2014

      Exactly. When nurses with masters degrees in certain areas are made to act ward sisters and those who cannot complete a masters degree which they tried to do several times are appointed to high office and made to act in even high offices because they singing to labor for thier supper.

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