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UAE: Senior nurses discuss key challenges facing industry – News

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Experts highlight talent shortage due to lack of potential educators, high turnover and uneven distribution of workforce


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Ayesha Ali Ahmed Al Mahri talks to a group of colleagues. – Photos provided

published: Sunday, May 14, 2023 at 11:05 pm

A senior Emirati nurse says the shortage of nurses across the UAE is like a call for more young professionals to join the front line of nursing in the country’s booming health sector.

Ayesha Ali Ahmed Al Mahri, a nurse with more than 25 years of service and former president of the UAE Nursing Association, said the shortage of nursing talent persists due to a combination of factors including a lack of potential educators, high turnover and uneven distribution of the workforce.

“When I started in a leadership role, my biggest task was to develop a strategy that would overcome the shortage of nurses. This is an ongoing challenge. We want to retain nurses and are always looking for qualified and competent nurses. problems faced by people all over the world.

“What makes healthcare professionals unique compared to other professions is that it’s ingrained in our minds and souls from day one, from the moment you pursue it academically. It’s a profession where you give your life for others. It’s not about yourself, it’s about the patient,” said Burjeel Holdings’ Group Chief Nursing Officer.

Al Mahri started her journey as a nurse in 1997 after completing her nursing course at the Kuwait Hospital in Sharjah. For 12 years, she continued to serve as a bedside nurse in different specialties. She then felt it was imperative to build on her knowledge base.

“At that time I did a bachelor’s degree in nursing and then a master’s degree in healthcare administration. I also did another master’s degree in health economics. After that, I moved into different leadership roles.”

Identifying and encouraging specific nursing qualities will help hospitals and healthcare systems identify excellent nursing candidates and identify current nurses with leadership potential, she said.

“If you decide to pursue nursing as a career, make sure you have that passion because you are dealing with human life. Always try to advance your knowledge if you want to be successful in this industry. Make sure you understand what is going on around the healthcare industry The latest certification must be renewed,” Al Mahri said.

future career

Aida Dakash has dedicated 30 years of her life to the nursing profession and she has always been there for people.

“I started working in Jordan in 1987 as an ICU nurse. Then I moved to Aramco in Saudi Arabia. Then I came back to Jordan and then came to the UAE in 2001 as a nurse supervisor,” says Specialist in Dubai, Canada The Jordanian national who worked at the hospital said he was the head of nursing.

Dakash said: “There is a lot of demand for this role. People who join this industry are always employable and earn money, which is very beneficial. This is the career of the future. But one has to go through more training, Degrees and majors to keep improving your skills,” she added.

Elaborating on the role of a nurse, she explained that a nurse must learn to multitask, and that time and meticulousness are essential qualities.

“You have to take your medication on time, answer the phone on time, get the patient to the operating room (OT) on time, pick up the patient from the OT on time, and even do your paperwork on time. They should be prepared for the stress of the job because they’re almost in combat In the middle. Should something go wrong, the nurse will be at the center of things. The nurse should also have a high level of patience and not lose her cool or focus because she cannot afford a medical error. This is a huge responsibility,” Dhakash said.

get ready for the challenge

Julie Ann Alcantara, Head of Nursing at the Saudi German Hospital (SGH) in Dubai, was one of the first people to join the hospital when it began operations in 2012.

“I started my career in the Philippines in 2004. I never thought about becoming a nurse because I was afraid of bleeding and I wanted to do something myself. But over the years, I have become passionate about it and it It’s really gaining recognition as a profession. It’s a profession that’s in high demand and pays well,” she said.

She emphasized that nurses have multiple responsibilities, including providing direct patient care, managing cases, establishing standards of nursing practice, developing quality assurance protocols, and overseeing complex systems of care.

“Anyone looking to choose this as a career choice needs to be open-minded, ready to take on challenges, learn from previous generations and remain loyal. Loyalty is important because when you spend a few years in a hospital, you get input from different verticals. Skills are learned from different people. One has to stay in the hospital for at least a few years, not constantly changing jobs, which I think is a problem lately. To really grow, one has to have the right attitude, stay and keep at it ,” the Filipino expatriate added.

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