Tuesday, 4 August 2020

PURPORTED MOVE TO PROMOTE ALLIED TO DIRECTORS OF NURSING: UGONSA WRITES UCH MANAGEMENT

The news that UCH Ibadan is making stealth move to promote ineligible candidates as Directors of Nursing under the mask of "Courses Allied to Nursing"  has prompted UGONSA to write the UCH management. The letter, Ref No. UG/NAT/20/CMD/UCH/01 dated August 3, 2020, gave clarification on eligibility for plying the Directorate Cadre of Nursing. Below are

the wordings of the letter:


The Chief Medical Director,

University College Hospital (UCH),

Ibadan, Oyo State.

Attention:

Director of Administration, UCH,

                    &

Head of Nursing Services, UCH.

Sir/Madam,

CLARIFICATION ON ELIGIBILITY FOR DIRECTORSHIP IN NURSING: BNSc/BSc NURSING IS THE MINIMUM QUALIFICATION FOR ATTAINING THE DIRECTORATE CADRE IN NURSING: NO PROFESSION IS ALLIED TO NURSING AND NURSING IS ALLIED TO NO OTHER PROFESSION

Nightingales’ greetings from our members comprising nurses with a minimum qualification of first degree in Nursing!

2. The report reaching us that your hospital is about to promote some ineligible candidates to the directorate cadre of Nursing, on the basis that they possess degrees “allied” to nursing, prompted our reaching out to you for succinct clarification on eligibility for directorship in nursing.

3. It is our considered belief that some mischievous persons might have misled the management of our respected UCH to embark on such an unconscionable voyage which utterly conflicts with the prevailing laws and extant rules guiding promotions to the directorate cadre of nursing, hence the need to formally call the attention of the management to the extant provisions.

4. The nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMCN), the statutory regulatory body for nursing in Nigeria, and the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) had verily clarified via several memos and circulars, that nursing is a profession on its own recognized nationally and internationally and is not allied to or with any profession, and that eligibility for promotion to the directorate cadre in nursing is sine qua non of possession of first degree in nursing (Kindly refer the documents marked and attached as Annexure A, B & C).

5. The Head of Civil Service of the Federation (HCSF) had also affirmed the position of the NMCN and FMOH with circulars such as the one released after the 36th National Council on Establishment (NCE) meeting held in Akure, Ondo State, in the year 2012 that led to vacation of the circular Ref No. CND.100/S.6/Vol II/115 of 1st December 2006, which wrongly imported the term “allied” in the nursing lexicology in Nigeria and the one that was released in the year 2016 after the 39th NCE meeting in Minna, Niger State, which approved a unified scheme of service with the nomenclature “NURSING OFFICER” for all nurses but with an unequivocal caveat that career progression beyond the post of Chief Nursing Officer MUST be subject to acquisition of first degree in nursing   (Kindly refer the documents marked and attached as Annexure C, D & E).

6. To contemplate masking ineligible candidates under the toga of “degrees allied to nursing” for promotion to the directorate cadre of nursing against the statutory dictates that eligibility for such can only and would only be conferred by the possession of first degree in nursing is not only silly and preposterous but an atrocious and bellicose broad day rape on the rule of law that calls for nothing but anarchy.

7. To forestall such ominous dark cloud requires that we verily put the management of your hospital on timely notice that there are no such things as “degrees allied to nursing” just as the nursing degree is not allied to any other degree as the attached referenced documents clearly indicate.

8. While we are not against any nurse aspiring to reach the zenith of his/her career, we are totally against using such to truncate or water down professionalism in nursing as the purveyors of the “allied degree” and their collaborators seem desperate to.

9. We wish to humbly request that you challenge those flying the inordinate kite of  “degrees allied to nursing” in UCH to also furnish you with information on degrees that are allied to other professions such as Medicine, Law, Engineering, Pharmacy, Medical Laboratory Science, Physiotherapy, and so on.

10.  Promotion of RN/RM diplomates to directorate cadre of nursing with degrees other than the nursing degree is not only a blatant aberration to all principles of professionalism but an open defecation on the extant laws especially as the so-called “allied courses” have their own separate schemes of service which have never and will never recognize possession of first degree in nursing as eligibility for running their directorate cadres.

11. It patently defies rationality and logic how the purveyors of “degrees allied to nursing” and their promoters come to erroneously conceive that a single degree can grant an individual the eligibility for promotion and career progression in two separate and distinct professions and how they managed to lure the UCH management into such a crooked conception.

12. We therefore courteously call on the management of UCH to immediately abrogate any action or intentions aimed at promoting ineligible candidates to the directorate cadre of nursing and forthwith desist from contemplating such a grievous mistake again in the future as mistakes are meant to be corrected and not to be repeated.

 PRAYER

Having humbly called your esteemed attention to the impervious fact that no profession is allied to nursing, just as nursing is not allied to any other professions; we hereby respectfully call on your esteemed office to

1. immediately void all actions or intentions of wrongful promotions of the so-called “allied degree holders”, into the directorate cadre of nursing.

2. promote only qualified and eligible candidates possessing a minimum of first degree in nursing, .i.e. Bachelor of nursing Science (BNSc) degree or B.Sc Nursing, as prescribed by extant law, into the directorate cadre of nursing.

Please accept the assurances of our esteemed regards.

                               Signed:

CHIEF (HON.) S.E.O. EGWUENU           NURSE P.O. ETEN

 National President                                         Ag.National Secretary


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Monday, 20 July 2020

MURDER OF ENUGU NURSE: NURSES BEG ENUGU GOVERNOR TO RELEASE THEIR MEMBERS


Nurses under the aegis of University Graduates of Nursing Science Association (UGONSA) have decried the continued incarceration of their members over the alleged murder of former Head, Nursing Services, Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital (FNHE), Enugu, Dr. Mrs. Maria Amadi, despite glaring evidence that showed that they had no hand in the death of the woman, especially as the armed robbers who robbed and shot her in the course of robbery, have not only confessed to the crime and recreated how they carried out the operation to the police, but have also been charged to court.

In a statement on Monday by the National President, Chief (Hon). S.E.O. Egwuenu, and Ag.National Secretary, Nurse P.O. Eteng, the association said it does not want to believe the story making the rounds that they are still in detention because Governor Ugwuanyi had influenced the Enugu State judiciary to deploy ‘judicial filibuster’ to keep them perpetually incarcerated, but is simply begging the Governor to release these innocent employees of the FNHE to their families having incarcerated them unjustly for 18 months now for a crime they never committed.

Recall that Late Nurse Maria Amadi was allegedly shot dead on Thursday, March 21, 2019, at Federal Housing Estate, Trans-Ekulu, Enugu and the incident led to the arrest and subsequent detention, the next day, of three of her colleagues at the Hospital, namely Mrs. Buzo-Maduka Ruth, Mr. Afam Ndu and Mrs. Achalla Stella, on the allegation that she said before her demise that she suspects people she does not get along with in her place of work to be behind the incident. While Mrs. Buzo-Maduka Ruth and Mr. Afam Ndu (who are nurses and members of UGONSA) are respectively the Principal and Vice-Principal of the School of Post-Basic Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing of the FNHE (School of Nursing), Mrs. Achalla Stella is a Principal Confidential Secretary in the Hospital.

The statement read, “we showed remarkable equanimity when our members were unjustly and hurriedly clamped into detention without any shred of evidence over the unfortunate murder of Late Nurse Maria Amadi. Because we were interested in getting real justice for the deceased and the entire nursing community we went all the way in urging those with useful information regarding the gruesome murder of the late nurse to come forth with such.”

“Fortunately, someone who had useful information, as per who the real culprits are, in the person of Evangelist Tochukwu Obiorah (alias Iko Nso) approached the association. Evangelist Tochukwu Obiorah is not an ordinary person in the Enugu State Security circle. As at the time of the unfortunate incident of the murder of Late Nurse Maria Amadi till now, he is the Assistant State Commander of Enugu State Neighborhood Watch. As  a top-notch leader of Enugu State Neighborhood Watch, he does not only cover the Trans-Ekulu axis where Nurse Maria Amadi was murdered but is also the Chief Security Officer (CSO) of Ugboye and Ugbowa neighbourhood Watch in Abakpa-Nike, Enugu and has been a frontline Neighborhood Security Officer in Enugu State for the past 22 years.”

“The useful information provided by Evangelist Tochukwu Obiora led us to petition the Inspector General of police to launch a comprehensive investigation into the matter. A fresh investigation carried out by the Federal Anti-Robbery Squad, Force Criminal Investigation Department, Abuja, led to arrest of three suspected armed robbers that carried out the attack, namely, Chidiebere Ochi, Amandi Ekwo and Uchenna Onuora. The suspects did not only confessed to killing Dr. Mrs. Amadi in the course of robbing her but also recreated for the police how the incident happened.”

“Instructively, the killer armed robbers also made it very clear that nobody contracted them to kill Dr.Amadi and that they do not know any of the FNHE employees who were unjustly accused and arrested over the death of the woman.”

“Following this, the armed robber suspects who shot and killed her were charged to court vide the charge No E/333C/2019, filed against them, before an Enugu High Court, signed by Mr. Celestine Odo, a Superintendent of Police, attached to the Legal/Prosecution Section, Force CID. They were alleged to have committed “armed robbery and murder punishable under Section 1, (2) (a) and (b) of the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Act, Cap. R11, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2010 and Section 274(1) of the Criminal Code.”

Particulars of the offence as contained in the charge read: “Chidiebere Ochi ‘m’, Amandi Ekwo ‘m’ a.k.a. “Pharaoh”, Uchenna Onuora ‘m’ a.k.a. “Amigo” and others now at large on or about the 21st March 2019 at about 1700hrs, at No. 38 Enugu-Ezike Street, Federal Housing Estate, Trans-Ekulu, Enugu, within the Enugu judicial division, while armed with two pistols loaded with ammunitions did rob one late Dr. (Mrs) Maria Amadi of her mobile phone, value yet unknown and an undisclosed sum of money and at the time of the robbery shot her at the lower abdomen and upper thighs. In the count 2, they were said to have committed murder punishable under Section 274(1) of the Criminal Code Cap. 30 Laws of Enugu State of Nigeria, 2004.”

“Furthermore, an interim police investigation report signed by CP Olafimihan Adeoye, Commissioner of Police, FSARS, Force CID, recommended that the case of criminal conspiracy and murder that was charged to court by the State Criminal Investigation Department, (SCID) Enugu State Command against Mrs. Buzo-Maduka Ruth, Mr. Afam Ndu, and Mrs. Achara Stella should be withdrawn from the court.”

“Besides this, the National Human Right Commission (NHRC) after examining the substance of the case, in its letter to the Chief Judge of Enugu State Judiciary, Ref.No.NHRC/ABS/2019/056 dated January 14, 2020 described as “an aberration of justice” the continued incarceration of Mrs. Buzo-Maduka Ruth, Mr. Afam Ndu, and Mrs. Achara Stella over the same murder of Late Nurse Maria Amadi which the police found and clearly stated they were not involved and for which the apprehended armed robber suspects that confessed to the crime have been charged to court.”

“We have heard many things about this case including how Governor Ugwuanyi has tied the hands of the Enugu State Chief Judge and that of Attorney-General of Enugu State over this case such that our members will languish in perpetuity in jail and will never come out alive to resume their duties as the Principal and Vice-Principal of the School of Nursing. While we do not want to cling on rumours, we respectfully demand from Governor Ugwuanyi and the Chief Judge of Enugu State to tell the general public why these innocent employees of the FHNE are still unjustly incarcerated despite mounting and formidable evidence that shows that they have no hand in the death of Nurse Amadi.”

“While we humbly beg the Governor of Enugu State, His Excellency Rt. Hon. Lawrence Ifeanyichukwu Ugwuanyi, for the umpteenth time to forthwith release our members and the other employee of the FNHE that are unjustly incarcerated by the Enugu State government, we want to make it abundantly clear that we shall squarely hold him accountable should anything untoward happen to them while in this inexplicable, unjust and unwarranted incarceration for a crime they never committed” – the statement concluded.

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Sunday, 19 July 2020

UGONSA FORWARDS INTERNSHIP IMPLEMENTATION LIST TO FMOH





Director of Nursing Services,
Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH),
New Federal Secretariat Complex,
Phase III, Ahmadu Bello Way,
Central Business District,
P.M.B 083, Garki, Abuja, Nigeria.

Dear Madam,
LIST OF FEDERAL AND STATE-OWNED HOSPITALS/ HOSPITAL MANAGEMENT BOARDS (HMB) THAT HAVE NOT IMPLEMENTED NURSING INTERNSHIP TRAINING IN NIGERIA AS AT 19TH OF JULY, 2020

Nightingale greetings to you from members of our association. The underlisted are the compiled list showing the Federal hospitals and state-owned hospitals/Hospital Management Boards (HMB) across different states of the federation that have not implemented nursing internship training. We thereby humbly seek the assistance of your esteem office in influencing its full implementation in the concerned states.

1. Abia State
Abia state State HMB - Internship not implemented

2. Adamawa State
Adamawa State HMB and its tertiary hospitals – Internship not implemented

3. Akwa Ibom State
Akwa Ibom State HMB - Internship not implemented
Feedback from members - The key hospitals that supposed to have Nurse interns in the State but not doing so are:
1.Ibom specialist hospital
2.Immanuel General Hospital, Eket
3. General Hospital, Ikot Ekpene
4. General Hospital, Iquita, Oron
5. Methodist General Hospital, Ituk Mbang.
The first four Hospitals are currently training Doctors on Housemanship.

4. Anambra state
Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu Teaching Hospital - Awka has not started nursing internship – Internship not implemented

5. Bayelsa State
Federal Medical Center Yenegoa – Internship not implemented
Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital Bayelsa State – Internship not implemented
(Feedback from members - The DNS told us that the approval given for the first set of Nurse-interns was not renewable and as such, we would have to seek another approval from the governor for another set of interns to be taken. We have been having several meetings with the DNS and First Lady for a while now and all we have heard is that they are working on it and that the governor is not around.)

6. Benue State
Benue state HMB – Nursing Internship implementation started, but did not pay any of their inter nurses while other interns from sister professions are being paid

7. Borno State
University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital - Internship not implemented
Borno state HMB - Internship not implemented

8. Cross River
Cross River State HMB - Internship not implemented

9. Delta State
Delta State Hospital Management Board (HMB) which controls Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara - – Internship not implemented

10. Ebonyi State
Ebonyi State HMB - Internship not implemented
(Feedback from members - Ebonyi state does not have a state government-owned tertiary health institution fit for internship training.)

11. Ekiti State
University of Ado Ekiti Teaching Hospital - Internship not implemented
Ekiti State HMB - Internship not implemented

12. Enugu state
Enugu state university of science and technology Teaching Hospital, Parklane – Internship not implemented

13. Gombe State
Gombe State HMB - Internship not implemented

14. Imo state
Imo state HMB - Internship not implemented


15. Jigawa State
FMC BIRNIN-KUDU, Jigawa State – Internship not implemented
(Feedback from members - Management has refused to commence a nursing internship despite the various attempts by the nurses in the hospital.)
Only Jigawa state HMB Implemented Nursing internship.

16. Kaduna State
Kaduna State HMB and Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital (BDTH) in Kaduna – Internship not implemented
(Feedback from members - 44 Hospitals capable of training nurse interns in Kaduna state, but no hospital or tertiary institution own by the state is currently training Nurse-interns.)

17. Katsina State
FMC Katsina - Internship not implemented

18. Kebbi State
Kebbi State HMB - Internship not implemented

19. Kogi State
FMC Lokoja, Kogi State - Internship not implemented
Kogi state HMB - Internship not implemented

20. Kwara State
Kwara state HMB - Internship not implemented

21. Nasarawa State
FMC Keffi - Internship not implemented
Nasarawa State HMB that controls the Dalhatu Araf Specialist Hospital (DASH) Lafia - Internship not implemented

22. Niger State
Niger State HMB - Internship not implemented

23. Ogun State
While Ogun state government has approved nursing internship, Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital controlled by HMB (OOUTH) is yet to commence nursing internship since 2017

24. Ondo State
The University of Medical Science has commenced nursing internship but the state HMB has not widely implemented the training in other state-owned specialist hospitals.

25. Osun State

Ladoke Akintola Teaching Hospital (LAUTECH) Osogbo Osun state - Internship not implemented
Osun state HMB - Internship not implemented

26. Oyo State
Oyo State HMB and its tertiary hospital – Internship not implemented

27. Plateau state
Plateau state hospital management board (HMB) that controls Plateau State Specialist Hospital. – Internship not implemented

28. Rivers State
Rivers State HMB and its tertiary hospitals – Internship not implemented

29. Sokoto State
Sokoto State Specialist Hospital under the HMB – Internship not implemented 
(Feedback from members - Sokoto State Specialist Hospital trains House officers and interns from other healthcare professions but has not started nursing internship)

30. Taraba State
Taraba State HMB - Internship not implemented
(Feedback from members - The Taraba state specialist Hospital is capable of training nurse interns)

31. Zamfara State
Zamfara state HMB - Internship not implemented

STATES WHERE BOTH STATE HMB AND FEDERAL HOSPITALS HAVE FULLY IMPLEMENTED NURSING INTERNSHIP

32. Bauchi State
33. Edo State
34. Kano State
35. Lagos State
36. Yobe State


Signed:

NUR. OJO OPEYEMI        NUR. OLOYE ABIOLA
President, Western Zone       Secretary, Western Zone
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Wednesday, 8 July 2020

PUBLIC NOTICE









The University Graduates of Nursing Science Association (UGONSA) wishes to announce that its 20th National Professional Conference & Scientific update scheduled to hold from Monday 5th October to Friday 9th October 2020 at Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, Nigeria, has been postponed till further notice. Collection of abstracts continues. Those that submitted abstracts shall be notified personally about changes in events and the situation regarding the acceptance/rejection of their abstracts.

Signed:

Nurse P.O. Eteng
Ag. National Secretary
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Monday, 6 July 2020

INTERNSHIP & PROPER PLACEMENT: UGONSA ENGAGES BAYELSA STATE HMB









The Chief Medical Director,
Bayelsa State Hospital Management Board,
Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

Attention:
The Director of Nursing Services,
Hospital Management Board, Yenagoa,
Bayelsa State.
             &
The Director of Nursing Services,
Ministry of Health, Yenagoa,
Bayelsa State.

Sir/Madam,
NON-IMPLEMENTATION OF PROPER PLACEMENT OF GRADUATE NURSES AND EXCLUSION OF NURSE INTERN POSITION FROM INTERNSHIP ADVERT OF THE BAYELSA STATE HOSPITAL MANAGEMENT BOARD

Nightingales’ greetings from members of this association.

       2.      The report we received from the Bayelsa State chapter of our association on the above subject matter, prompted our writing to abreast you with extant issues on internship and proper placement of graduate nurses [.i.e. Registered Nurses (RN) with Bachelor of Nursing Science (BNSc) degree].  

        3. Kindly note that on September 8, 2016, the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (HCSF) released a circular, Ref No. HCSF/EIR/CND/S.100/ST/97, which prescribed compulsory internship training for fresh graduates of BNSc degree and their extant placement post-NYSC (National Youth Service Corps) as Grade Level 09 (.i.e CONHESS 08). The release of the referred circular was sequel to National Council on Establishment (NCE) meeting held on July 22, 2016 in Minna, Niger State, which Bayelsa State Government was ably part and parcel of.

     4. Following the release of the circular, the placement of graduate nurses in the civil service anywhere in Nigeria became Grade Level 09 post-NYSC (.i.e. CONHESS 08).

    5. This was further evident in the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) Circular, Ref No.C6093/T/13 dated 19th June 2017, which succinctly spelt out that the extant placement of graduates of BNSc degree post-NYSC as CONHESS 08 effective from 8th September 2016 (being the date of release of the circular by the office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation) and that Nursing officers who were already in the service before this date, and are still below this new base shall be upgraded to the new base (.i.e. CONHESS 08) effective from the said date of release of the circular (.i.e. 8th September 2016).

   6. Aside the FMOH circulars, another circular from the office of the HCSF, Ref No.B63279/S.7/II/T/273dated 24th April 2002 clearly stated that when there is an adjustment of salary grade level as a result of Enhanced Entry Point (Base Grade) to a cadre in the Civil Service, the adjustment shall affect officers within the cadre whose positions fall below the new entry point.

   7.  Consequent from the above-referenced circulars, all nursing officers who were below CONHESS 08 prior to the date of release of the circular became automatically promoted to CONHESS 08 effective from the date of release of the circular (.i.e. 8th September 2016).  

    8. Furthermore, to ensure speedy implementation of the internship and new entry point for the graduate nurses by all institutions that employ nurses, the FMOH vide another circular Ref No. C.6093/T/16 dated February 20, 2018, and also vide a reminder, Ref No.C2920/5.3/C.2/1/155 dated 5th February 2019, directed all heads of healthcare institutions to expressly implement the internship and proper placement of graduate nurses in their various institutions. This resulted in massive implementation of the circular in many institutions across the federation.

    9.  We were surprised to get the report that the progressive Bayelsa of all States is yet to implement these circulars in its Hospital Management Board (HMB).

    10. We therefore most respectfully demand that you kindly implement the internship and proper placement of graduates of BNSc degree in the Bayelsa State Hospital Management Board without further delay in the spirit of the extant laws as espoused by the referenced circulars.

     11. Attached herewith are the referenced circulars and documents labeled in the following order:
Annexure A: Complaint from the Bayelsa State chapter of our association
Annexure B: Circular from the office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation   (HCSF), Ref No. HCSF/EIR/CND/S.100/ST/97 dated September 8, 2016.
Annexure C: Circular from the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH), Ref No.C6093/T/13 dated 19th June 2017.
Annexure D: Circular from the office of the HCSF, Ref No.B63279/S.7/II/T/273dated 24th April 2002.
Annexure E: Circular from the FMOH, Ref No. C.6093/T/16 dated February 20, 2018.
Annexure F: Circular from the FMOH, Ref No.C2920/5.3/C.2/1/155 dated 5th February 2019
Signed:

       

 CHIEF (HON.) S.E.O. EGWUENU                        NURSE P.O. ETENG
  National President                                                      Ag.National Secretary

CC: 
Head of Service, Bayelsa State,
Office of the Head of Service
State Government Secretariat, Yenagoa,
Bayelsa State.

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Thursday, 25 June 2020

LCN: UGONSA WRITES DELTA STATE GOVERNMENT




UGONSA has written the Delta State government over the recent move by the State to start the controversial LCN programme. The letter, Ref No. UG/NAT/20/DSCOH/01 dated June 23, 2020, and titled, "BEFORE THE HEALTH SYSTEM OF DELTA STATE IS DESTROYED" was addressed to the Delta State Commissioner of Health and copied to the Governor and Director of Nursing, Delta State. Below is the full text of the letter:
















The Delta State Commissioner of Health,
Delta State Ministry of Health,
Asaba, Delta State.
Sir/Madam,
BEFORE THE HEALTH SYSTEM OF DELTA STATE IS DESTROYED
We warmly extend to your person and esteemed office the Nightingales' greetings from the leadership and members of the University Graduates of Nursing Science Association (UGONSA), the professional association of nurses with a minimum qualification of first degree in nursing.

      2.  The news reaching us that the Delta State Ministry of Health (DSMOH) under your able watch is planning to introduce a Licensed Community Nursing (LCN) programme in the State prompted us to write you to give you insight on the dark sides of the programme lest it further dilutes the health system of the State. 
  
     3.  We make haste to reach out to you because we believe you must have been misled by the faulty circular on the LCN programme, Ref No. N&MCN/SG/RO/CIR/24/VOL.4/152 dated March 3, 2020, which emanated from the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMCN) (marked and attached as Annexure A). The circular falsely alleged that the reason the council was introducing the LCN programme is that there is a “gross shortage of nurses” occasioned by a mass migration of Nurses & Midwives to urban areas and other countries. This incorrect statement is capable of deceiving any well-meaning person and the unsuspecting public on the issue of availability of nurses for employment in our health system.

     4. One thing with nursing is that it is very complex and forms the nucleus of healthcare delivery be it medical, surgical, psychiatry, rehabilitation, palliative or, any other type of care. Such a complex role can only be handled efficiently and effectively by sound brains which the existing nursing programmes attract and parade in adequate numbers and not daft school leavers which the purported LCN programme seeks to flood nursing with.

     5. The existing nursing training in Nigeria meets the best international standard and verily equips the Nigerian nurses with the necessary knowledge, skills and latitude for critical thinking, clinical reasoning & judgment, and the clinical competence to play and coordinate independent, dependent and interdependent roles in the healthcare delivery system anywhere in the world. Hence, when they migrate outside the country they are able to fit in and perform excellently well in the health system of the developed world such the US, Canada, UK, Ireland and so on, where our political class throng for treatment for lack of confidence in our own health system. What this shows is that the Nigerian nurses are not the reason our health system is backward but the faulty system and faulty policies such as this misguided introduction of LCN programme.

     6. The LCN programme primarily seeks to lower the existing standard of nursing education via the introduction of a 2-years programme for a lower cadre of Nurses with having a very poor O’level result (.i.e. at least a credit in English and Biology) being the principal admission requirement. Contrasted with the current situation for the existing nursing programmes in the schools of nursing and the departments of nursing in the university where entry requirements of five credits in English, Maths, Biology, Chemistry and Physics is the basis for admission you will understand that the LCN is nothing but a fig tree to hand over the complex roles of nursing to individuals that have limited mental capability to carry out such roles when we have enough qualified unemployed nurses and midwives currently roaming the streets in search of nursing & midwifery jobs.

      7. That the NMCN issued the LCN circular on a false and faulty premise of “gross shortage of nurses” has been attested to by series of empirical facts. Mounting evidence shows that unemployed nurses and midwives are in excess and want to be employed and deployed to rural community settings. For example, a study conducted by this association (marked and attached as Annexure B) showed that at least 41% of Nigerian Nurses & Midwives produced in a session remain unemployed, and 95% of them are willing to work in the rural community settings if given the opportunity. Again, the National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM) Delta State Council in her enumeration of unemployed nurses and midwives of Delta State origin found that about 1500 nurses and midwives of the State origin are unemployed (kindly refer to the report marked and attached as Annexure C).

     8. From the foregoing, you can see that the problem is never a shortage of qualified nurses and midwives for employment but a gross shortage of opportunity for them in our healthcare delivery system even in rural community settings.

     9. On this note, we respectfully admonish that you should jettison the negative deception of the NMCN LCN circular and move to positive a direction that will strengthen the root of the healthcare system which is shaky everywhere in Nigeria (and not only in Delta State) by creating employment opportunity in the rural communities for the teeming number of unemployed nurses and midwives of Delta State origin with commensurate motivation of rural posting allowance.

    10. Furthermore, in the spirit and letters of the task-shifting & task-sharing policy and to ensure that highly skilled and competent nurses that have diagnostic and prescriptive authority are available all the time in the rural communities, we recommend and urge that the Delta State Ministry of Health (DSMOH) partners with the NMCN and the departments of nursing in the universities offering nursing in Delta State to create an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Programme (Nurse Practitioners’ programme) for the holders of Bachelor of Nursing Science (BNSc) degree who majored in Public health nursing awardable and licensable via a masters’ degree in Community Health Nursing  (Please kindly refer to page 14 of the Task-shifting & Task-sharing policy document on Recommendations on the Service delivery at the Community Level hereby marked and attached as Annexure D).

    11. Having Community Health Nurse Practitioners working in association with Community Health Physicians in the rural communities of Delta State for prompt diagnosis and treatment of diseases & illnesses, as is obtainable in developed countries, will go a long way in changing the narratives of inadequate healthcare coverage bedeviling the rural communities.    

PRAYER
The good people of Delta State deserve to be cared for by educated, well-trained, competent, and highly skilled nursing workforce and their health and well-being should be the priority of the State government. Therefore, we respectfully demand that the DSMOH

                I.  totally stops its voyage into the training of the so-called LCNs which portends entrusting the lives of the good people of Delta State unto the care of the weakest brains among the secondary school leavers. Nursing is a complex profession that deals with human lives. Those whom people’s lives are entrusted unto their care must have the requisite mental capability and must be well educated, trained, skilled and competent to carry out such tasks effectively and efficiently.
   
         II. starts recruiting and deploying to the rural community settings at least 100 (one hundred) Registered Nurses and Midwives including those with BNSc degree every year to boost the availability of skilled nursing workforce in the rural areas.

         III. liaise with the NMCN and the universities offering nursing in Delta State to start offering Masters’ degree in Community Health Nursing leading to licensure as Advanced Practice Registered Community Health Nurse (.i.e Community Health Nurse Practitioner) who will work in association with Community Health Physicians to diagnose, and prescribe treatments for common diseases and ailments in the rural community settings in the spirit and letter of the task-shifting & task-sharing policy.

Submitted with deepest sense of respect and responsibility.

                        Signed:


CHIEF (HON.) S.E.O. EGWUENU                  NURSE P.O. ETENG
  National President                                         Ag.National Secretary

CC: Director, Nursing Services Delta State.
        His Excellency, The Governor of Delta State.  
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Tuesday, 23 June 2020

UGONSA WRITES FMOH OVER UITH EXCLUSION OF BNSC HOLDERS FROM ITS EMPLOYMENT ADVERT


The Honourable Minister of Health,
Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH),
New Federal Secretariat Complex,
Phase III, Ahmadu Bello Way,
Central Business District,
P.M.B 083, Garki, Abuja, Nigeria.

Attention:
              The Director Human Resources &,
              The Director Hospital services, FMOH

Sir/Madam,
EXCLUSION OF REGISTERED NURSES AND MIDWIVES WITH BNSC IN THE RECENT PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT ADVERT MADE BY THE UNIVERSITY OF ILORIN TEACHING HOSPITAL IS A WANTON MARGINALIZATION, DEBASEMENT AND BALKANIZATION OF THE NURSING PROFESSION: A REQUEST FOR URGENT INTERVENTION OF THE MINISTRY

The University graduate of Nursing Science Association (UGONSA), the professional association of nurses with a minimum qualification of Bachelor degree in nursing once more brings you her Nightingale’s greetings and wish to thank you for your astute efforts so far in trying to address the perennial wrongs and marginalization of the nursing profession in our health system especially the issue of under placement of the graduates of Bachelor of Nursing Science (BNSc).

      2.  However, we observed that the anomalous behaviour of the management of the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH) is antithetical to the commendable efforts the FMOH under your watch is making to foster a sense of equity, fairness and inclusiveness among all the healthcare professionals to strengthen a harmonious work relationship in the healthcare delivery system of our dear the country.

      3. In its recent advert for recruitment of healthcare professionals, the UITH brazenly excluded the Registered Nurses (RN) and Registered Midwives (RM) with Bachelor of Nursing Science (BNSc) degree. The divisive advert published June 3rd, 2020 and circulated widely via the electronic media, which ostensibly aimed at balkanizing the nursing profession and pinching nurses against each other have been confirmed by our association as truly emanating from the UITH evidenced by domicile of the advert on the official website of the institution with this URL: https://www.uithilorin.org.ng/staffnurseadvert.

      4. Most worrisome is that UITH made it appear as if the selective target of RN/RM with BNSc degree for exclusion in their advert is a new policy of the FMOH as our preliminary engagement with some management staff of the hospital saw them irrationally make a fig leaf to put the FMOH in the loop.
  
      5.  However, when our previous demand on the institution for proper placement of the RN/RM with BNSc degree [vide our letter Ref. No: UGONSA/018/UITH/CMD/01dated 30th June 2018 hereby attached] which was reluctantly done without implementing the financial aspect of the upgrade as was done by other hospitals under the same FMOH is indexed with the current action of the UITH it becomes understandable the UITH management is on a lone inglorious voyage to marginalize and debase the nursing profession.

     6.  That this selective exclusion was directed only to the University Graduates of Nursing and not to the University Graduates of all the core Healthcare Professions portends that the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the UITH is divisive and unfit to manage the affairs of a conglomerate of diverse people and interests working together for a common course as is the case of the healthcare delivery system.

      7.   This provocative action of the CMD and the management of the UITH if not nipped in the bud has the propensity to open up a new wave of avoidable agitation in our health system which shall adversely affect and undermine the candid efforts the FMOH is making to ensure a sustainable qualitative care delivery to the Nigerian masses.

     8.  We viewed this disdainful exclusion of RN/RM with BNSc degree in the employment advert by UITH as not only a well-calculated attempt to unjustly steer nurses with higher qualification in nursing away from the clinical area but also as scornful ridicule of the educational attainment of nurses and midwives. This is especially as what qualifies and justifies the inclusion of the University Graduates of other core healthcare professions in the advert also justify why their counterparts in nursing should be included.

     9. The Bachelor degree in nursing which has become a nightmare to the CMD UITH and his management staff took most nurses and midwives excruciating pain and hard work to get. Some spent 3 years in the school of nursing and 18 months in the school of midwifery before enrolling to spend another 5 years for the BNSc programme only to be bizarrely told that they are not qualified for employment in a Federal government-owned teaching hospital just because they took pain to develop themselves professionally to be able to add qualitative value to nursing services.  

PRAYER
We humbly and passionately call on your esteemed office to urgently

       1.  direct the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (UITH) and his management team to review their recent employment advert and make provision for the graduate nurses (.i.e RN/RM with BNSc degree) in the advert.

     2.  pay the graduate nurses whose placement were adjusted in line with the extant circulars on placement of nurses the accruing financial benefits related to the adjustment of their grades.

      3.  caution the CMD and the management of the UITH to desist from their open resentment of the nursing profession and its higher education qualifications and to start carrying all the healthcare professional along as crucial and indispensable part of the healthcare team.

Submitted with deepest sense of respect.


Signed:

NUR. OJO OPEYEMI                                                          NUR. OLOYE ABIOLA  
President, Western Zone                                                           Secretary, Western Zone


CC: Director, Nursing Services FMOH
       Deputy Director Nursing Services FMOH
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