Readers’ Response/ Opinion
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My brother-in-law underwent knee surgery two weeks ago at the Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital, Rose Belle. Following the surgery, he was lying down for a couple of days in extreme agony. His pain was ignored by the nursing staff, in spite of their attention being drawn to how much pain he was having. He was not allowed any fluid for up to six hours after the surgery, though he requested that his mouth be moistened with sips of water. The nursing care was very poor indeed: there was no plan in place to manage his care and general well-being. He was not allowed to sit out of bed 24 hours after surgery.
In this connection, may I raise the following points:
It appears that nursing in Mauritius is not based on evidence-based care, for example, no patient should be made to endure unnecessary pain. Nowadays, the painkiller tablets available are very effective. Sadly he was not prescribed any such medication. Denying sips of water following surgery causes more distress to the patient.
Research in UK clearly shows that patients may be allowed water in small amounts during the first hour after operation, unless the patient has had abdominal surgery. They should also be assisted to sit out of bed after 24 hours as long as medication for pain relief has been given.
Prolonged bed rest is known to cause more complications and also delays healing, besides lowering patient morale. Further, the chances of clot formation are doubled. Also, the bladder catheter should be removed within the first 12 hours following knee surgery.
In the interest of good care, the Nursing Council in Mauritius may wish to give guidance about nursing standards benchmarked to international norms, and commission an action plan with this objective in view. In the UK, the patient is placed at the centre of care plans, with respect for his dignity. If any mishap occurs, this is documented and investigated as a matter of priority by the hospital authorities. Errors in nursing challenge us to seek solutions as to how best we can bring about improvements.
If a similar approach were adopted in Mauritius, all patients in the island would be nursed with respect, dignity and compassion.
Ramesh S. Bhuguth
Senior Lecturer in Nursing – UK
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I am referring to TD Fuego’s article in your issue of 24 Feb 2011 – ‘We are not all fools!’. I must say that he has been too mild in his reaction.
We are all being treated by politicians as a horde of 5-star idiots. The monopoly of intelligence, according to these politicians, lies only in their hands. Every political party should bear in mind that Mauritius belongs to all Mauritians and not to any one political party that, once elected to government, can dispose of our lands as they wish. These matters have never been on any party’s electoral programmes. No one can deny that we are slowly but surely selling away our country to foreign speculators through the IRS and ERS schemes. Most of our arable and productive lands are being converted into concrete jungles and that too with little or no planning.
Everything is being done to satisfy the demands of local and foreign speculators. The public does not have any say in these matters; how can it when they are not given the opportunity to voice out their opinions, yet the local parties boast of being the champions of democracy and good governance. Has any of them thought of or supported the idea of conducting public referenda on matters of national interest? What, for example, do the people think about the Jin Fei project? Do they support it? Are they willing to see Mauritius being gradually converted into yet another colony?
Kalodyne, Grand Gaube
* Published in print edition on 11 March 2011