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Nurses urged to take lead in achieving universal quality health care

<div>Nurses have been challenged to take the frontline in advocacy, patient safety, research and education as well as participation in shaping health policy and health systems management. This will enable the country to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) number three on quality health care and wellbeing for all. This year’s theme was  “Nurses: A Voice to Lead - Achieving Sustainable Development Goals.”       </div><div>      </div><div>“We need to have a voice in key health care policy making organisations that influence health care delivery at the local, national and international levels. We should, therefore, advocate for representation in these organisations to enable​ us to speak out with authority and be part of the policy-making process rather than consumers and implementers.” Ms Susan Otieno, the President, East, Central and Southern Africa College of Nursing and former Director of Nursing in the Ministry of Health said while speaking to a delegation of nurses during International Nurses Day Celebrations held at Aga Khan University Hospital where she was Chief Guest.</div><div>
</div><div>“Nurses form the largest health care workforce in the world and have the capacity to continue shaping and delivering health care services to all. The greatest focus now should be on quality care, staffing and specialisation to build a more efficient nursing workforce that will transform and ensure universal access to health care.”  Ms Otieno further noted.       </div><div>​      </div><div>Ms Jemimah Kimeu, the Chief Nursing Officer at Aga Khan University Hospital, called on nurses to reflect on their contribution in their individual capacities towards achieving SDG’s. She said “Our contribution and impact in the health care profession and what we have managed to achieve even with the shortage of nurses currently being experienced is beyond measure.       </div><div>      </div><div>Health care is multidisciplinary, and we should work together with other professions in improving access to quality health care services. In some areas, nurses are the sole health care providers handling very complex cases of patient illness and have to manage the patient’s expectations.  It is, therefore, important to recognise the role of nurses in achieving quality health care for all.”</div><div>
</div><div>During the celebrations, fifteen nurses were recognised for their excellence in patient care and safety. Mr Shawn Bolouki, Chief Executive Officer at Aga Khan University Hospital, urged nurses to improve their skills and knowledge to keep up with the modern world. “Health care has gone high-tech, and nurses need to keep abreast with technology. They should get more involved in nursing care research initiatives as well as hospital management projects to help shape health care delivery in a better way in future”.</div><div>
</div><div>The event brought together nurses and nursing leaders from the Ministry of Health, universities, associations as well as nurses from both public and private hospitals.</div>

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