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International Nurses Day 2024: Recognizing the backbone of healthcare

It has always been said that nurses are the pillars of the hospital. There is no denying this fact. The initiation began ever since the lady with the lamp, Florence Nightingale, marched ahead with the motto of serving mankind. It is still going on; nurses don’t fall behind in uplifting and restoring the health of people. Previously, nurses were limited to hospitals, clinics, and wellness centers.

However, the need for nurses is felt necessary in other fields as well. The need has expanded to schools where a child molds into a better version of self. This simply highlights how remarkable this profession is.

Dealing with life and death on a daily basis is not an easy task. It encompasses emotional rise along with physical exhaustion. All in all, a nurse, after enrolling in this profession, gains emotional maturity swiftly in comparison to people of the same age from other professions. There is a gradual development of a motherly nature with a good sense of empathy which helps them to serve their patients for positive health. I firmly believe that helping people attain good health is no less than visiting a holy place for spiritual and emotional contentment. Reviving a life either through birth or from the deathbed gives another level of satisfaction and happiness.

Besides, there are no other driving forces in the profession. The respect for nurses and the financial payoff really break my heart as it doesn’t match with the sacrifices made: sleepless nights, missing out on important personal events, skipping meals, forgetting to drink water, avoiding restroom breaks, and so on. There are a few government hospitals that pay well, but it too lacks a positive working environment. I have personally witnessed the majority of nurses are frustrated, some of them have already been burnt out.

These days there is a trend of seeking opportunities abroad. A lot of nurses are happy to be RN (Registered Nurse) of the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, and other countries instead of being a registered nurse of Nepal.

It is indeed a painful truth that will soon cause a crisis in the nursing field in the days ahead. Also, Nepal has not reached the point where it can afford international nurses to come and fill those vacant places. It ultimately poses a threat to the nation and its development. The profession deserves being dignified with respect to nurses, better career opportunities, better job placement, vacancies according to the patient flow, and obviously good pay.

Bade is a nurse at Gangalal Hospital in Kathmandu.