University of Ghana commences paediatric nursing programme
Accra, May 31, GNA - The School of Nursing at the University of Ghana in partnership with the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), Canada, has commenced a Paediatric Nursing Certificate Programme (PNCP) this year.
The programme aims at building the educational capacity of nurses and equipping them with the requisite knowledge and skills in clinical practice, education and research. In addition, it was to accelerate government's efforts aimed at reducing Child Morbidity and Mortality to achieve the Millennium Development Goal four for the country. Speaking at the inaugural ceremony for the commencement of training programme in Accra on Monday, Dr Ernestina Donkor, Acting Dean, School of Nursing, said the PNCP was designed to meet the increasing national health demand for quality child care. According to the Ministry of Health, she said, the country needed to produce approximately 1,000 to 1,500 competent Paediatric nurses to meet the nursing needs of the country's 8 million children and their families across the country for the next 10-15 years. Dr Donkor said the PNCP is one-year training programme under a three-year Canadian International Development Agency grant (CIDA). She said the SickKids Hospital would support development, implementation and teaching of the paediatric nurses until December 2012. "Concurrently, a sustainability plan is being development to ensure the local partners could sustain the programme beyond three-years," she added.
She said an inter-organisational collaboration with the Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service, Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, College of Health Sciences and the Nurses and Midwives' Council of Ghana have been established to ensure the success of the PNCP. Dr Donkor said the first batch of 40 students was selected from nursing training institutions and hospitals across the country. Dr Isaac Odame, Associate Professor at the University of Toronto, called on the students not to only think about themselves but also of how to transfer the skills and knowledge to others. He urged them to take the opportunity to upgrade themselves to better address child health issues in their various hospitals. Dr Odame also said appropriate arrangement was being made for stakeholders in the health sector to recognize paediatric nurses upon the completion of their course, adding that other conditions of service would be negotiated for them.
Mr Dylan Walters, Projector Manager, SickKids, urged the new students to participant actively to enable them to learn and to discharge their services well. He said with the commencement of the programme in Ghana more partnership would be forged in other areas of health.