The first cohort of nurses from Ghana is expected in Barbados next month to take up duties at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH).
Fifty registered nurses, some of them specialists, will be assigned to the QEH and will be followed in the coming months by another 28 who will be assigned to the Ministry of Health and Wellness, to work in the primary health care system.
Of the 28 registered nurses, 11 will be working within the 24-hour polyclinic service and 17 will be assigned to the geriatric hospitals and polyclinics. The second cohort, numbering 42, is expected in April.
Minister of Health and Wellness, Lt. Col. Jeffrey Bostic, addressing QEH workers at their annual staff awards last Saturday, urged them to embrace their new colleagues and make them feel welcome.
He told them: “How you make these nurses feel in terms of integrating into this society and this culture is going to be fundamental to the level of service they provide for our countrymen and women.”
Noting that Barbadians sometimes tended to be very xenophobic, he reminded his audience that Barbadians have gone all over the world to work in all professions, adding “the Good book tells you that you should do unto others as you would have others do unto you”.
He said that based on the reports he had received, the Ghanaian nurses were highly qualified and articulate and had a lot to offer Barbados… “the experience that they have while residing here and working in Barbados depends on the people in this room to a large extent.
“There are things that you can learn from them, and undoubtedly, things that they may learn from you and it will redound to the benefit of this country. So, let us do what we can to make sure that the experience that they have while here in Barbados is a positive one and a good one.”