Nursing not suitable as NS stint for women

I disagree with suggestions for women to be deployed in hospitals or nursing homes under calls for them to do national service ("Consider teaching, nursing stints" by Mr Tan Peng Boon; last Tuesday and "'Parallel' form of NS for women" by Mr Kishor Kumar G; last Saturday).

Our health-care workforce is already facing a shortage of nurses and health-care professionals. It does not need to have more stress in the system with minimally trained individuals.

The nurses who work in hospitals and nursing homes are highly trained professionals.

Nursing also requires a keen interest, passion and commitment. The long hours and heavy workload may not be suitable for conscripted individuals doing their "parallel" national service.

It may also not be wise to let women serving NS do even seemingly menial tasks like sponging or feeding a patient, as these tasks require a trained understanding of anatomy and physiology, as well as pathophysiology.

Trying to boost the nursing workforce in hospitals and nursing homes is a noble intention, but the job requires a high level of passion and knowledge.

There are other ways of serving the nation; getting women to do a nursing stint as part of NS might not be the best solution.

Muhammad Hafashah Mohd Aslam


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