October 29, 2020
Business News

Call goes out for healthcare staff as crisis looms in Waterford nursing homes

A call has gone out across Waterford for any healthcare staff to make themselves available as the nursing crisis in our healthcare facilities and nursing homes reaches crisis point.

Nursing homes across the county are shouting out for staff to help them get through the coronavirus crisis.

Speaking on behalf of the sector Ann Byrne of Drakelands House nursing home in Kilkenny said: “There is a serious shortage of nurses and carers at the moment.”

She made the call for anyone who may have retired from the health system and who feels they can be of assistance at this time, is asked to contact any of the nursing homes or care facilities and they will be guided in the right direction.

This call for healthcare workers comes hot on the heels of the World Health Organisation’s report which established there is a shortfall of close to six million nurses worldwide.

The first “State of the World’s Nursing” report, which is published to mark World Health Day yesterday revealed there is a global aging nursing workforce, particularly in Europe; there is a global shortage of 5.9m nurses;  and in high-income countries like Ireland, we have an “excessive reliance” on international nursing mobility.

The report also found that globally nurses make up 59% of the healthcare workforce, however in Ireland the number was roughly half of that at 32% in the public health service.

As a result of this report, the WHO, as well as the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation are calling for an 8% increase in the number of nursing graduates each year to 2030; an expansion of advanced nurse practice and nurse-led units,  and fair remuneration and strong retention measures.

INMO President, Martina Harkin Kelly, said: “COVID-19 has shown us how vital nursing and midwifery is to global health and wellbeing.

“Many warnings on staffing were not heeded before this pandemic – we cannot allow a global nursing shortage to hamper our response to future public health emergencies. This report must be the basis for immediate action in Ireland and globally to support the retention of nurses,” she concluded.

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