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St Ann’s Bay Regional Hospital honours nursing staff

Published:Tuesday | July 27, 2021 | 12:07 AMCarl Gilchrist/Gleaner Writer

MORE THAN 300 workers in the nursing department at the St Ann’s Bay Regional Hospital were honoured during a luncheon held last Thursday to mark Nurses Week 2021.

The honourees, who were presented with certificates of appreciation, included registered nurses, midwives, patient-care assistants, psychiatric-care nurses, and according to chairman of the hospital Michael Belnavis, the workers deserved to be highly commended for the work they have done, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Belnavis paid special tribute to several nurses who contracted the COVID-19 during the execution of their duties, noting that collectively, the staff never relented in the fight against the disease.

“The fact that we were able to really make things happen here considering what we’ve gone through with the spikes and so on, and at the end of the day we had one of the lowest death rates (in the parish) is a tribute to their work and commitment,” Belnavis told The Gleaner.

He added: “They do such tremendous work, these nurses here, and they need to be given all the accolades necessary because they put themselves out there and are there, reliably so, to take care of us. So this function here is to recognise them and to really thank them for their service, for what they’ve been doing for the people of St Ann.”

And in addressing the nurses, the hospital’s chief executive officer, Dennis Morgan, made it known just how appreciative the management was of the work the nurses do.

“Each day you give everything. You have to provide care for the hundreds of patients coming to our facility, many with less-than-optimistic prognosis,” he said.

“Yet,” he continued, “you managed to give them hope and comfort during their ordeal, if even for a few more hours, days, or weeks. And I’m sure they and their families are thankful for you being there, even if they don’t say it. So on their behalf, I will say thank you for your service.”

Morgan later told The Gleaner: “Every year, the management of this hospital and indeed hospitals across the North East region do something as a little token just to say to our nurses, thank you. We recognise that a week, a day, is not long enough to show our appreciation because what they do all year long, they should be celebrated every single day of the year. But this is just management and staff showing our appreciation for them, and I think they appreciate that.”

The nurses indeed appreciated the gesture, according to Michelle Hall, a departmental nurse manager who has served at the hospital for 21 years.

“I feel really appreciated this week, especially with this luncheon put on by our administrators of this hospital. It shows that we are being thought of in a special way,” Hall said.

She added: “It’s more than just the nutrition. (It’s also) the words that were spoken. We really appreciate them. We are being led by an excellent manager, our director of nursing services. Her standards are really high, and so we are tasked daily to adhere to the standards, no compromising.”

Nurses Week was observed from July 18 to 23 under the theme ‘Nurses: A Voice to Lead – A Vision for Future Healthcare.’