COVID worry – Nurses’ union concerned with members’ family

Nurses Premika Sharma and Fanela Vilesta prepare doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine during the vaccination drive at the Kinoya Village Hall. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA/FT FILE

The Fiji Nursing Association says it is concerned about the welfare of members who are taking care of COVID-19 patients in hospitals.

President Alisi Vudiniabola said with the increasing number of cases across the country and the added burden on health resources, she wanted to ensure nurses were well taken care of.

“We just want to ensure our members are being taken care of in terms of being provided food, adequate facilities for rest and privacy and have access to all the personal protective equipment they needed,” she said.

Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr James Fong said he was aware of a situation at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital and it was being addressed.

“This has been a concern as soon as the case broke out in CWM,” he said. “Unfortunately, CWM had high occupancy.

“We are currently rectifying that by moving some positive cases to isolation units inside and outside the hospital.”

In terms of the association’s concerns about nurses having enough PPEs, Dr Fong said there was no issue with stock.

“We have enough PPEs but having some issues with distributing PPEs because of restrictions on movement and the need to change some of our distribution standard operating procedures.

“We have been better over the last two days with more decentralised storage areas.”

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