Specialised nurses touted for GPHC’s paediatric unit

GINA, GUYANA, Monday, May 8, 2017

Country Coordinator of the Baby Heart Foundation Programme and Paediatric Surgeon, Dr. Marissa Seepersaud is advocating for the specialisation of nurses within the Paediatric Unit of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC). The doctor said the specialisation of nurses will complement the level of care provided by specialised doctors.

Dr. Marissa Seepersaud – Country Coordinator of the Baby Heart Foundation Programme and Paediatric Surgeon (left) briefing Minister within the Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Karen Cummings and other members of a Parliamentary Sectoral Committee on Social Services during a recent visit to the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation.

The paediatric unit is currently being expanded to accommodate more staff, and medical equipment, offering a number of specialised services. Specialised nursing care will result in patient-centered care being delivered.

“Most of the newer services that we have are specialised services so doctors are specialised, and the nurses must be specialised and we cannot expect, that even on the two sides that you see here, that the medical doctors or the medical nurses can function efficiently and effectively. On the surgical side, there are vastly different things,” Dr. Seepersaud explained.

The paediatric surgeon further noted that one of the services offered, requiring specialised nursing care is the Cardiac Intensive Care for children. She pointed out that procedures in paediatric cardiology require professionalism to evaluate and treat the fetus since heart problems can now be detected before birth. Additionally, the nurses can directly engage and provide follow-up treatment care to patients.

“Let’s say cardiology, the adult cardiology and paediatric cardiology are completely different things so we need to recognise that, and we need to work towards specialised teams and building teams and not splitting them up and moving them around to have everybody have the same exposure, we have to be masters of our trade,”  Dr. Seepersaud pointed out.

In 2016, a specialised nursing programme was launched for emergency medicine. This programme allows for nurses to administer emergency medicine, working along with emergency unit doctors to resuscitate and treat patients in a timely manner.

The specialisation of nurses in the Public Health system breaks the mould of nurses being trained and exposed to a number of specialties that are offered. In many cases, the involvement of a specialised nurse can prevent patients from being re-hospitalised.

Specialised nurses play a vital role in educating patients on best practices to manage symptoms, as well as offer support following diagnosis.


By: Delicia Haynes


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