If you want to understand why many Ghanaians have resorted to alternative medical diagnosis, try visiting a public health centre. The recent upsurge in Herbal Clinics and Exorcists, reflect the negative and intolerant attitude of some nurses towards patients.
The arrogant ladies in green, who were purportedly trained to emulate the lifestyle of the ever-passionate Florence Nightingale, have rather taken a cold path in the delivery of their service. I can’t tell whether this attitude is global or it’s only limited to Ghana, but trust me, I’ve had my own terrible experience.
In the early month of January 2017, around 2.a.m, I assisted a friend to send His ailing girlfriend to a public health centre. The sick lady, who could not even stand on her feet, was not provided with any wheelchair or stretcher upon our arrival. We managed to carry her to the OPD only to be told by those beautiful nurses that there isn’t any doctor on duty. I wasn’t actually worried about the absence of a doctor– the tone and body language of the nurses was good enough to further elicit pain and discomfort. They sounded so crude, arrogant, and irresponsible. The beautiful nurses practically drove us away without any sign of guilt or empathy.
I have heard, read, and seen people complain bitterly about the attitude of some nurses. I keep asking myself; why do these nurses behave the way they do? As part of their courses at the various health colleges, they are taken through extensive lessons in Communication Skills, Human Behavior (Psychology), etc. Unfortunately, our beautiful ladies in green have serious deficiencies in Communication (Oral) and the understanding of Human Behavior (Psychology).
A good nurse in my opinion should;
·Be caring in nature
·Have good communication skills
·Be emotionally intelligent
·Have physical and mental endurance
What are some of the reasons behind the rude attitude of most nurses?
Nursing is a profession for people who truly have a passion to care for others. Unfortunately, most people enter into this noble profession solely because of money or better job opportunities. People who enter into nursing just because they need a job automatically sign up for a grumpy and frustrating life. When you are in a profession that you do not have any passion for, you always channel your anger and frustration on your clients. No wonder most nurses act livid, thoughtless, and rude.
Nursing is a stressful and demanding (psychological, emotional, and physical) profession and it is very easy to lose the compassion you need to show your patient.
What can we do to eliminate the rude nurses from the system?
The Nurses and Midwifery Council (NMC) or whichever body that is responsible for the recruitment of nurses should be encouraged to conduct proper personality assessments for prospective nurses. The requirement should not be limited to academic excellence. Passion and strong will for the job should be considered.
Again, there should be a proper code of conduct for the profession and if possible, a transparent and friendly system should be made possible for clients to report and make suggestions.
That I believe are some of the ways we can save lives and rebuild the confidence of the public in nurses.
By Alpha Osei Amoako