Nurses on the frontline
The SVG Retired Nurses Association salutes the nurses in St. Vincent & the Grenadines and around the world who are on the frontlines of the battle against the corona virus.
By Advira Providence
President, and members of SVGRNA.
When the International Council of Nurses in collaboration with the World Health Organization launched the “Nursing Now” campaign and designated 2020 as the year of the nurse and midwife; no one realized how meaningful this would become as the COVID-19 pandemic was not on the horizon. Since we became aware of the virus in February it has swiftly and aggressively taken over the world, becoming the first pandemic in most people’s lifetime, killing thousands including nurses.
As the novel corona virus ravages the world, many nurses find themselves on the frontlines, leaving their homes and families for days even weeks; involved in testing, contact tracing, working in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, bringing them in direct contact with persons affected with the virus. The risk is great!
The risk of spreading this virus is so high that family members of patients are not allowed to visit or be at the bedside of their loved ones, many dying alone. Nurses are carrying out their duties while having to comfort their patients, holding hands, making calls to their loved ones and at times enabling them to say their goodbyes through electronic devices.
Many nurses have lost their lives and some find themselves in the heartbreaking position of having to care for sick and dying colleagues. As they work together, they do not know who will be the next to fall victim to this deadly virus. Despite this, nurses around the world are answering the call to be on the frontlines. A nurse being interviewed was asked by a journalist why she answered that call; the nurse simply said, “Because I am a nurse.”
We salute all nurses, especially those on the Covid-19 frontlines for their dedication to the profession, for the sacrifices of self and their families to preserve the health and life of others. We honor them for their suffering and forbearance as they deal with the staggering numbers of illnesses and deaths in such a short period of time.
Nursing is a profession that assumes responsibility for the continuous care of the sick, the disabled, and the dying. We are also responsible for the promotion of community, family and individual health.
As retired nurses, we are concerned for those on the frontlines in SVG and elsewhere. We are encouraging you the public, to adhere to the recommendations of the National Covid-19 Task Force, wear a mask when going out in public, maintain physical distancing, wash your hands with soap and water utilizing friction for 20 seconds, and maintain social contacts with friends and families. We are also asking you to look out for your neighbors and those in high risk categories; the elderly, the sick, shut-ins, and the disabled.
Stay home, if possible, to protect yourself and other health care personnel. We encourage all nursing staff to remain calm and focused as we combat Covid-19 pandemic.
2020 is indeed the year of the Nurse!