The government is justifying reasons for bringing in nurses from Ghana, while several issues remain unresolved with those currently employed at the Sir Lester Bird Medical Center
The Ministry of Health informed the Cabinet on Wednesday that Antigua and Barbuda have started the process to attract Ghanaian nurses to Antigua and Barbuda, saying that Barbados has successfully recruited one hundred nurses from Ghana.
Chief of Staff in the Office of Prime Minister Lionel Hurst told reporters that even if the government addresses all the issues that nurses here are lamenting about, it will not fill the shortfall at the hospital and other healthcare institutions.
“Additionally, the movement of nurses from another part of the world to Antigua and Barbuda is a lengthy process. We have begun it, to ensure that at some point, very soon we can address that shortfall,” Hurst said,
As far as the concerns of nurses here; which includes uniform allowances, working conditions, being burnt out, and pension, Hurst says is still being addressed, anticipating that the discussions will have positive outcomes.
He said the nurses from Ghana will be placed at various clinics, as well as the SLBMC and the emergency center which was recently established on Nugent Avenue
“As you also know we are building a new Renal Centre where the Edward Ward once stood at the Holberton Hospital and in all likelihood, we are going to see some nurses with some competence in that particular area who will be able to assist those who are on dialysis,” saying that the ministry of health will look to the Barbadian model to map the way forward.
The nurses from Ghana are English speaking, have been trained to meet the standards set by the United States, and have several years of experience.