‘We need to celebrate excellence delivered by nurses,’ KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo said at UKZN’s Nursing Discipline’s Gala dinner.
The event at the Elangeni Hotel in Durban was held to celebrate the Discipline’s 60 years of existence and the inauguration of the Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) candidates.
‘I want you (UKZN) to continue to train specialised nurses and spread that to other parts of the country,’ said Dhlomo.
The MEC commended UKZN for its ophthalmic nurses training at McCord Hospital in Durban and also encouraged the Nursing Discipline to train palliative care nurses.
‘Nurses make a lasting difference where there are no doctors.’
The Executive Director of the College of Health Sciences, Professor Fannie Botha, welcomed guests at the function and congratulated the Discipline. ‘The College is proud of the Discipline. Our academics play an important role in motivating for diversity and our courses are an indication of our leadership in Africa.’
National Chief Nursing Officer Dr Nohlahla Makhanya spoke fondly of the late Professor Leanna Uys of UKZN’s Nursing Discipline and committed to fruitful nursing partnerships between the Discipline and the Department of Health.
Nursing HoD, Professor Gugu Mchunu, acknowledged previous heads of the Discipline, Professor L Lamont, Professor Thandi Gwele, Professor Oluyinka Adejumo and Professor Busisiwe Bhengu.
Recalling the Discipline’s history, Dean and Head of the School, Professor Busi Ncama, told guests how far the discipline had progressed, highlighting the achievements of recent years.
‘A lot has been achieved by the Nursing Discipline in the past 60 years, however, the investment needs to be evident and documented,’ said Ncama.
‘As a Discipline we plan to develop scholarship that focuses on service delivery, support nurses in clinics through mentorships and also conduct research around health systems issues, such as demands created by HIV and AIDS, TB and comorbidities especially,’ said Ncama.
The dinner was followed by a two-day University Deans in South Africa (FUNDISA) meeting at the Medical School, attended by heads of schools from universities offering nursing qualifications in South Africa.
FUNDISA strives to be a unified platform to pursue excellence in nursing scholarship at South African universities.