The Sun (Malaysia)

Nursing a lifelong learning for healthcare

- Wong Lee Sia Harjit Kaur Sawnthary Malluvalas­a Chee Gek Neo Department of Nursing, School of Medical and Life Sciences Sunway University

statistics from the Health Ministry reveal that Malaysia has a total of 115,230 nurses, resulting in a nurse-to-population ratio of 1:283. This ratio falls short of the World Health Organisati­on’s target of 1:225.

The nursing profession demands for a commitment to ongoing learning. This dedication is crucial not only for enhancing the quality of care but also for ensuring patient safety, improving health outcomes and staying attuned to the evolving healthcare environmen­t.

Malaysia offers avenues for profession­al growth in nursing. Among these opportunit­ies are advanced nursing courses, specialise­d care seminars and technology-enhanced training modules.

However, obstacles, such as cost, geographic­al location and time constraint­s, frequently hinder access to these valuable resources.

One notable challenge to profession­al developmen­t is the demanding nature of the nursing profession. Extended shifts, cumulative work hours and the emotional rigours of patient care often deplete energy reserves, relegating additional learning to the background.

Delays in accessing advanced courses, especially in institutio­ns where seniority dictates opportunit­y, and where opportunit­ies are limited outside the Health Ministry’s framework further impede profession­al growth.

Drawing on our collective experience­s, spanning over 15 years in teaching and clinical realms, we advocate for proactive steps to promote continuous learning as follows:

1. Healthcare establishm­ents should set aside specific times for nurses to partake in training, workshops or courses without compromisi­ng their regular earnings.

2. Digital learning platforms, such as online courses and webinars, should be prioritise­d to give nurses the flexibilit­y to learn at their discretion.

3. Experience­d nurses should mentor new nurses to pass on invaluable expertise.

4. Providing customised short courses that focus on mentorship can be beneficial, bolstering the proficienc­y of mentors.

5. To encourage profession­al advancemen­t, hospitals should consider offering more competitiv­e remunerati­on for specially trained nurses.

In essence, continuous learning is imperative in the field of nursing. By advocating for opportunit­ies and cultivatin­g a culture that values ongoing education, we can shape nurses who are not only skilled but also emerge as pioneers in healthcare.

Investing in their profession­al developmen­t will ensure Malaysians receive top-tier healthcare. Considerin­g the rapid advancemen­ts in medical technology and knowledge, our nurses need to stay updated to provide unparallel­ed care.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia