Prime minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said her government is working to upgrade nurses training standard to an international level to meet growing demand of specialised nurses in home and abroad.
“We are working to upgrade the training system for the nurses to an international level,” she said.
The prime minister was speaking as the chief guest at a certificate giving ceremony among the pioneering graduates of the Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Memorial KPJ Specialised Hospital and Nursing College in Kashimpur of Gazipur.
“We need a large number of nurses. We’ve built nursing institutes for which specialised nurses are required. And for this, we need to give quality training to them. We’ve already sent nurses abroad for training and are working to make sure they get international level training in the country,” she said.
Sheikh Rehana, vice president of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust and younger daughter of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was present on the occasion as special guest.
Sheikh Hasina, however, said the certificate distribution ceremony among the first graduates from such an international level organisation will also encourage the boys and girls of the country to join this profession.
Describing healthcare service as a noble profession, she hoped the fresh graduates will render services to the distressed people by applying their knowledge and experience.
Spelling out her government’s initiative to develop graduate and post-graduate nurses, the prime minister said all nurses have to take care of the patients more sincerely as the government has given them honour and elevated their status.
“Once upon a time the nursing profession was mostly neglected despite it is a noble profession. But the Awami League government has upgraded the status of nurses to second class and increased their salaries in a bid to encourage people joining the profession,” she said.
The prime minister distributed certificates among all the graduates and Prime Minister’s Award to Rubina Jesmin of 2014-15 session, Kamrun Nahar of 2014-15 session and Rina Akhter of 2016-17 session for their educational excellence.
As many as 79 students including 57 post-basic students have completed their graduation as the pioneering batch from the college.
Professor Dato’ Lokman Saim, vice chancellor and dean of School of Medicine of KPJ Healthcare University College in Malaysia addressed the function as graduation speaker while chief executive officer of Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Memorial KPJ Specialised Hospital and Nursing College professor Taufik Bin Ismail gave welcome address.
Khairul Islam, one of the students of 2014-15 session of the college, also spoke on the occasion on behalf of the graduates.
The nursing college students also performed dance with a welcome song at the function.
Sheikh Hasina later joined a photo session with the pioneering graduates of the college.
Energypac Limited later handed over keys of two ambulances to the prime minister for the college.
Sheikh Hasina highlighted her government’s strides for development in the health sector.
She said that the nurses now can complete graduation (four-year BSC in nursing) instead of taking diploma training and they also can get PhD degree in the future due to the government initiatives to strengthen the nursing education.
“The government has already transformed seven nursing institutes to colleges while process is underway to make 15 more nursing institutions into colleges,” she said.
“We are also going to establish nursing college in every major district,” she added.
In this context, the prime minister said, at present, 33,490 nurses are employed in public health care institutions in the country with the recruitment of 5,100 senior staff nurses last year.
The posts of 3,000 midwives have been created while 1,148 midwives have so far been appointed in public services in two phases and the process of recruiting 1,848 more midwives is underway, she informed.
“Every divisional headquarters would have a medical university,” she said, adding that medical university in Chattogram, Rajshahi and Sylhet are under construction.
As part of the plan, she said, steps were taken to establish ‘community clinic’ in every village to provide primary healthcare services for the people in light of the Bangabandhu’s initiatives to build a 10-bed health centre in every union.
“In light of Bangabandhu’s dream, the Awami League government, after taking office has started working to ensure healthcare services for the people by setting up a community clinic for every 6,000 people,” she said.
“But after assuming office, the then BNP government closed the community clinics fearing that the people will vote for “Boat” (electoral symbol of AL) for establishing those. From now on, no government can stop the operation of community clinics as those are now being run by a trust,” she assured.
The government has encouraged both the public and private investments to the development of education and human resources in the country.
Sheikh Hasina, also president of the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust expressed her wishes to create a healthcare hub at Kashimpur inGazipur to ensure quality treatment to the people particularly, the workers as it is an industrial area.
“It is my desire to build a medical college here as part of the effort to establish a healthcare hub in the area. Land acquisition to this respect has already been completed,” she said.
The prime minister, however, expressed her happiness with the Medicare services being rendered to the people by Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Memorial KPJ Specialised Hospital and Nursing College.
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina along with Malaysian prime minister Dato’ Sri Mohammad Najib bin Tun Abdul Razak and the Bangabandhu Trust’s vice president Sheikh Rehana inaugurated the hospital on 18 November 2013.
Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the nursing college on 8 April 2015. In this context, she recalled the memory of her mother Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib, lifelong companion of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and her source of inspiration with deep respect.
As part of conducting various welfare and humanitarian activities Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust has established Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib Memorial KPJ Specialised Hospital and Nursing College on its land at Kashimpur union in Gazipur district.
The prime minister said they have formed a trust for running the hospital with a fund of Tk 200 million. Of which, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Memorial Trust gave Tk 100 million and assured its authorities to allocate more money for it to ensure better healthcare services to poor people.