WITH health facilities recording more patients with dengue fever, leave dates for all nurses around the country have been cancelled.
Confirming this in an interview yesterday, nursing director Silina Waqa-Ledua said all pending leave applications were also cancelled.
"When there is an outbreak, we have to be on deck so that they can facilitate some of the clients to respond to the dengue outbreak," Mrs Waqa-Ledua said.
She said while more patients were presenting themselves, the outbreak was not much of an issue because the 200 graduates have been admitted to the system for support.
"So that would cushion a lot and even if the nurses, doctors or technicians are brought back, they need to respond to this outbreak period."
Mrs Waqa-Ledua said the nurses had a leave roster to follow and they would be allowed to take their leave once the situation normalised.
"We are an essential service and that is why we have put a stop to all leaves and out of that, our health facilities will be accessed rapidly with the increasing population so that's why we have people on stand-by."
Mrs Waqa-Ledua also clarified that no nurses were put to work extended hours.
"Nothing has changed in their shifts from the day nursing started. They do three shifts a day.
"So some do morning starting at 6.30am to 2.30pm, some do the 8am to 4pm shift, some do afternoon and some night shifts and in certain areas, there is a 12-hour shift."
She said if nurses were told to do extra hours, they would be paid by the ministry.