Zambia Union of Nurses Organisation (ZUNO) has called on the Government to safeguard the health and well-being of nurses taking care of patients in Cholera Centres.
The latest updates by the Ministry of Health indicate increasing new Cholera cases especially in Lusaka, the situation which is no doubt deteriorating and life threatening.
ZUNO General Secretary Mr Fray Michelo in a press statement said that while ZUNO recognises the efforts Government has instituted in trying to mitigate the cholera outbreak, it is important to ensure that all necessary measures are put in place to safeguard the health and well-being of nurses.
Mr Michelo noted that ZUNO believes that every nurse has the right to work in a healthy and safe environment without risk of illness resulting from that work.
He said ZUNO is fully aware and appreciate Government efforts to prevent further spread of the disease such as; closure of schools across the country, market places and other identified sources of infection, provision of safe drinking water to people in the affected areas.
” It is however also true that nurses who are essential workers are present 24 hours at all cholera centres, which are a highly risky environment, taking care of patients.” Mr Michelo said adding that nurses have for some time now made a legitimate call on the Government provide them with the privileges of an essential worker.
ZUNO maintained that Safe work environments and decent pay for nurses are essential to deliver quality care and contribute to a strengthened workforce, and has therefore urged the Government to take keen interest in the call for support and appreciation to the nurses who are dedicated to give care to the affected citizens of this country especially in various cholera centres.
ZUNO has further appealed to the Government through the Ministry of Health to ensure all treatment centres have enough medical supplies, appropriate protective clothing and human resource to manage the situation at all times.
The ZUNO General Secretary urged the nurses’ working in cholera centres to remain calm and dedicated to duty while observing all the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of infection and furthered appealed to Zambian citizens to observe high levels of hygiene during this cholera epidemic.
The Cholera epidemic broke out around October 2017 in Lusaka before spreading to other parts of the country claiming the lives of more than 50 people and infected over 2000 people.