Underscoring the importance of upgradation of skills of nurses across the country, Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare stated that the Government is committed to providing accessible, affordable and quality training to them. He also emphasised that the Nursing Staff occupies important position in healthcare delivery and without them the desired results cannot be achieved. “The role of the nursing staff can be compared equally to that of the doctors when we think of achieving the SDGs”. Shri J P Nadda was speaking at the inauguration of Indian Nursing Council Office Complex. Dr Kirit P Solanki, Member of Parliament, Shri Ganesh Singh, Member of Parliament, and Shri Dileep Kumar, President, Indian Nursing Council were also present during the inaugural function. Shri Nadda launched two new Nurse Practitioner Courses, one in Critical Care and the other in Primary Healthcare. He also launched a web-based ‘Live Register’ for Nurses.
While laying stress on importance of adequate skill enhancement through appropriate training, Shri Nadda stated that the training course for the nurses should be contextualised, so that they are imparted education and knowledge of the Indian healthcare landscape. He also underscored the importance of informal education in addition to formal education, as it shall provide a holistic and rounded understanding of the various issues the nursed are required to deal with in their profession. The need for sensitisation towards laid down protocols in treatment should be made part of the curriculum, the Minister added. The Health Minister stated that in harmony with the vision of the Hon. Prime Minister to “Skill India”, we also need to ponder on how the courses for skilling the nurses can be synced with the Skill India program.
Shri Nadda termed the newly launched “Live Register” as path-breaking. Through the Live Register accurate data of active and registered nurses will be made available online. This will help the Government in better manpower planning and for making policy level decisions for the nursing professionals in India. Shri Nadda stated that this will help in rationalisation and optimum utilisation of manpower. He further added that the government has given high priority for improving the Nursing and Midwifery cadre through skill development and continued professional development. He said that the Government has undertaken major expansion of nursing and technical education leading to a three-fold increase in the numbers of nursing institutions and in the number of students passing out of these institutions.
The Health Minister informed that the Government has undertaken several initiatives for strengthening of nursing cadre are. Some of these are establishment of ANM/GNM schools, up-gradation of institutions from School of Nursing to College of Nursing, Training of Nurses, development of 11 one year specialisation courses, revision of curriculum for all nursing programs, establishment of national PhD consortium for Nursing Research.
The Nurse Practitioner in Critical Care Program will be a two-year residential M.Sc degree in Nurse Practitioner in Critical care. On completion of the program Nurses will be qualified to assume responsibility and accountability for the care of critically ill patients. Whereas, the Nurse Practitioner in Primary Healthcare Program will be a one-year residential Post Graduate diploma program.
The Health Minister further said that there is an urgent need to make training course contextual to country’s needs. The Health Minister also suggested that the Nursing courses can be blended with skill India training Courses for countering the shortage of Nursing Staff.