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Healthcare work a calling to give back

30 Jan 2024

Sounds of coughing, beeping machines, and hurried footsteps fill the morning air in the busy Francistown’s Nyangabgwe Referral Hospital.
Patients lie in their beds, some awake and anxious, others sleeping fitfully.
Some have visitors by their side, while others sit alone, contemplating their fate.
In the midst of all this, one thing remains constant; the dedication and care of the hospital staff.
They work tirelessly to provide the best possible care for their patients, despite the challenges and emotional toll of their job.
There are many challenges that night duty nurses and doctors face.
The loss of life is certainly one of the most difficult, as they often comfort the families of the deceased while also caring for other patients.
In addition, shifts can be long and tiring and the lack of sleep can take a toll on one’s health.
The emotional and physical demands of the job can be difficult to handle, but for many, the reward of helping others and saving lives makes it all worthwhile.
“Working in a hospital is not just a job, it is a calling from God to give back to the community. A lot of people tend to take our job like any other job,” said Dr Ivan Kgetse, the hospital Superintendent in an interview.
He explains that it takes patience, love, and dedication to work in a busy and stressful environment like a hospital, especially in the surgical or emergency departments, where he once worked.
Despite the challenges, healthcare professionals find fulfillment in helping patients and making a difference in their lives.
 “It takes a special kind of person to be able to work in a busy and stressful environment like a hospital, especially the surgical department or emergency department. The compassion and dedication of healthcare professionals are what make our hospitals run smoothly and help people get the care they need,” Dr Kgetse says.
“Seeing someone who was almost dead and now he/she is alive is a motivation on the side of health workers on its own”.
Despite the many challenges and difficulties, he has faced in his career, Dr Kgetse remains committed to his work and has never considered resigning.
Even when faced with false accusations and difficult situations, Dr Kgetse continues to find fulfillment in helping others and making a difference in their lives.
He recalls that he was once falsely accused of giving a wrong drug to a patient even though the drug was correctly prescribed, adding that most of the false accusations were during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This accusation was made after the patient developed some side effects and the relatives of the patient seemed understandably upset and frustrated.
Other accusations, he explains, are with regard to language and attitude by health workers.
“Sometimes health workers do not have a chance to take a break and smile,” he said.
Despite the accusation and the stress, Dr Kgetse says, he remains focused on his job, providing the best possible care for patients.
Every patient deserves to be treated with respect and compassion, no matter their background or health status. Sometimes doctors must make difficult decisions in order to provide the best possible care for their patients.
This may include performing surgery without strong painkillers, even if it causes the patient discomfort. The needs of the patient come first, even if it means causing them pain in the short-term.
Dr Kgetse explains that sometimes this is necessary to ensure the patient’s safety and allow them to heal properly.
Mr Osenotse Setlhare, who was recently discharged from Nyangabgwe hospital, explains that his stay at the hospital changed his attitude towards healthcare workers.
After spending some time with them, he realised that he was just a scared man who needed a little compassion.
“It just goes to show that you should never judge a book by its cover,” he said.
Mr Setlhare suggests establishing gym rooms in major hospitals across the country.
“Exercise is important for overall health, and it can help patients recover from illness or injury,” he added.
He notes that in some cases, physical therapy is even prescribed as part of treatment.
“A gym in the hospital could allow patients to get the exercise they need, while also providing a convenient and safe space for them to do so.
The food in the hospital is good,  he says, but the shortage of materials and other equipment is stressful for patients, especially on weekends.
“We rely on the hospital staff to provide us with the care we need, but sometimes they just don’t have what they need to do their jobs. It is frustrating and stressful for everyone involved,” he added.
He explains that some nurses are not impatient by nature, but the demands of the job make it  difficult to maintain a positive attitude.
“Long hours, understaffing, and a lack of resources can take their toll on even the most dedicated caregivers,” he says.
Mr Setlhare opines that it is not that health workers do not care about their patients, but  sometimes the work environment makes it impossible to provide the care they know their patients deserve. ENDS

Source : BOPA

Author : Thamani Shabani


Event : Interview

Date : 30 Jan 2024