Diplomas for nurses

The government is considering releasing diplomas to graduate nurses who have been bonded by government after training but are jobless because health institutions have frozen recruitment.

The nurses cannot get their diplomas until they do three years national service. However, the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare says it has frozen 205 posts for registered general nurses, 115 State certified nurses, 17 primary care nurses and 42 doctors. The directive came from Treasury, which says the economy is badly performing and cannot pay the nurses.

The result is dire situation where qualified nurses have struggled to get jobs as deficits in the health service bite, with many leaving the country because they do not have their diplomas.

Mazowe Central MP Shepherd Mushonga asked Madzorera to explain to the House of Assembly the government’s policy regarding all nurses graduating from government training institutions and programmes which are not related to conditions of the government bonding scheme.

Madzorera explained that student nurses received training for a period of three years, but must do national service.

"In consideration of the training, the student nurse shall be bonded to the government of Zimbabwe for a period equal to the student nurse's duration of training," Madzorera said. "Under normal circumstances, no student shall be allowed to buyout any bonding period that he or she is required to serve. Currently, the ministry of Health and Child Welfare is considering the conditional release of certificates and diplomas to student nurses that have not yet been absorbed due to limited capacity."

Madzorera said the ministry of Health and Child Welfare and the Health Services Board continued to engage the ministry of Finance for an increase in the posts of nurses in view of the increased population and increasing disease burden.

"Certificates and diplomas for nurses who are employed are still released when bonding requirements have been met. Student nurses are all still required to sign an agreement that they will serve the government for a period equal to the period of training and their transcripts are withheld on completion of training until they have fully served the bonding period," Madzorera said.

At least 500 nurses are graduating from government institutions every year but cannot do their housemanship because of the freeze.

Post published in: News

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