DENOSA Gauteng is hosting its three-day Provincial Congress at the Pure Joy Guest Lodge in Kameelsdrift, Pretoria, which started on 31 July 2014.
Guests from ANC, COSATU, SACP, and regulatory body for nursing in the country, the South African Nursing Council, have addressed the congress on a number of pertinent issues on political, socio-economic and professional climate and developments as a way to inform deliberations at the congress.
In her address on the first day, DENOSA President, Dorothy Matebeni, paid homage to nurses who work under extremely difficult conditions in war-torn areas such as Gaza, where even health centres get bombed. She urged unity among nurses so that a common goal can be achieved. She called on all nurses to refrain from operating in many small bubbles and that nurses should make use of their numerical power effectively and to their advantage.
She highlighted the many success stories as a result of nurses who have played a key role in improving the health of South Africans. She mentioned the increase in the life expectancy for average South African to the age of 60 years, and said this is thanks to the many nurses who are experts in health.
Director of DENOSA Professional Institute (DPI), the organisation’s professional wing, Dr Nozizwe Daphney Conco, made a presentation to the congress about the institute’s call for the Department of Health to consider making the Chief Nursing Officers at provincial, regional and districts levels and for provincial Chief Nursing Officers to report to the head of department so that nursing matters can be resolved urgently. She also presented about the Leadership For Change Programme and the project that the third group of students are embarking on: Looking at the sustainability of NHI and the nurses role thereof.
She emphasized the beefing up of resources for offices of Chief Nursing Offers as well as for NHI to be a success and result in positive outcomes in the quality of health for South Africans.
Chairperson in the province, Simon Hlungwani, highlighted a number of challenges that still need to be addressed in order for effectiveness of nurses to be realised. These included the need to improve the standard of resources at health facilities where nurses operate, effectiveness of SANC in as far as monitoring the sufficiency of resources that nurses operate with, so that communities can be better served by both SANC and nurses.
He also questioned the logic of giving nursing students half the allowance for uniform as if there is half uniform available for students, and called for all three public nursing colleges in Gauteng to provide residences for students as it is their duty to do so. He emphasized the need to get rid of the ‘baboon approach’ in increasing membership for the organisation in the province, where some will be lost in the process while others are being recruited. He called for the servicing of members as a way of retaining them within DENOSA fold, the home for nurses. He thanked all shop stewards of the organisation, who worked tirelessly for DENOSA and asked them to give themselves a big round of applause “even on behalf of those who are not here with us.”