Scientific confab of peri-operative nurses group opens at Ho

Mrs Antwi-Asare speaking at the conference

Mrs Antwi-Asare speaking at the conference

THE 8th annual Scientific Conference of the Peri-Operative Nurses Group-Ghana (PONGG) opened at Ho-Donorkodzi on Wednesday with a call on the health sector to accord members of the group their due recognition to enhance surgical safety and high standards of surgical care.

The five-day event which coincided with the group’s national workshop is under the theme: Peri-Operative Nurses: Dedicated to Ensuring Safety in the Surgical Environment.

The National Chairman of PONGG, Mrs. Caroline Antwi-Asare said at the opening ceremony that peri-operative nurses, provided the needed care for client support before, during and after surgical care or examination and that made them the patients advocate, ensuring the safest environment for surgery and surgical care in the operating environment.

Despite their viral role, however, she said that for far too long peri-operative were not give the needed recognition for their services and were merely regarded as “instrument nurses” or “theatre staff,” while they did not currently have a ranking system or a formalized pay structure.

“We still depend on the general nursing ranks while our operating rooms are being managed by persons other than peri-operative nurses and our departments are being flooded with unqualified personnel,” Mrs.Antwi-Asare moaned.

Worse still, she said that peri-operative nurses were being deprived of the opportunity to attend programmes to update their skills and contribute effectively to the development of their profession.

The PONGG national chairman insisted: It is important for our managers and stakeholders to appreciate the fact that our scope of work today has gone far beyond just handing over surgical instruments to the surgeon and we are the custodians of the operating theatres.

About 80 peri-operative nurses are attending the conference which will discuss various topics, including electro surgical hazards and their prevention, psychological traumas and management, overview of fracture management and surgical safety checklist, among other topic.

The participants will also be taken through chemical sterilization, sutures and suture materials, body mechanics/ergonomics, operating rooms standards and precautions during the use of image intensifier.


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