Nursing Scientific Day “Nurses Today”

May 17, 2014

Monla Hospital in collaboration with the University of Balamand Nursing Program performed a ‘Scientific Day’ on 17 May 2014 at the Safadi Cultural Center in Tripoli. The program, which addressed the empowerment of nurses and their career development, brought together 160 nurses from 18 different institutions in North Lebanon and Byblos.
Balamand’s Dr. Marie Therese Sabbagh delivered a speech on behalf of the director of the Nursing Program at UOB, Ms. Ursula Rizk, where she addressed ‘reality shock’ in nursing practice.

Reality shock, she explained, is the expectation reality generated stress experienced by new graduate nurses when transitioning from academia to their first professional experience in hospitals. One suggestion offered to prevent reality shock is increased collaboration between academia and practice, so as to increase student experiences.

Monla Hospital nursing director, Rajaa Halabi addressed leadership in nursing, describing it as “a necessary component in meeting the challenges of delivering quality patient health care.” She also showcased the obstacles to leadership, adding that nursing staff achieve more when the department functions as a team.

Ms. Silva Sailian, Nursing Program faculty member, focused on the need for “critical thinking and clinical judgment” which involves the careful examination of beliefs and actions. Critical thinking, she said, is an essential skill in nursing leadership and management, nursing care, research and education.

Joining the panelists, Dr. Nayla Nahhas, psychologist and assistant professor at UOB, offered a psychologist’s perspective on dealing with difficult patients. She described different types of difficult patients and the ways of dealing with them. She added that there are some attitudes that can harm the communication with patients, including failure to read the indicators of the patients’ status.

Ms. Marie Costantinos, intensive care unit supervisor at Monla Hospital, addressed the standards for building a friendly work environment. “There is growing evidence in the nursing literature regarding the positive impact of healthy work environments on staff satisfaction, retention, improved patient outcomes, and organizational performance,” she said.

Career development as a process was developed as a way to empower nurses. Ms. Peggy Germanos, pediatric nurse and instructor, explained the different stages of the process and highlighted the benefits of career development including “improved quality of work life, promoted evidence based practice, reduced employee attrition.”

As an example of career development, Ms. Bahia Al Moufti, Nursing Program assistant director and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) exposed the scope of practice and the pathway to qualify to the IBCLC exam. She also highlighted on the practice of breastfeeding in Lebanon, the short and long effect of breastfeeding on infant and maternal health in developing countries.

Ms. Manale Saiid, a specialist in gerontology nursing, exposed the demographic changes in Lebanon showing the growth of an aging population. “We should not be afraid of aging. We must be prepared to ensure better care of this population.” She explained that the role of the gerontology nurse specialist in delivering holistic elderly centered care in addition to protection and advocacy. She also highlighted the opportunities in Lebanon for the gerontology nurse within the strategy of the Ministry of Health.

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